Cal Poly Baseball Suffers First Loss of Season; Santa Clara Wins 5-2

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Evan Busby's two doubles and pair of RBIs were not enough to overcome a five-run deficit as Santa Clara improved to 4-0 and handed Cal Poly its first loss of the season with a 5-2 victory Tuesday night in Baggett Stadium.

The visiting Broncos scored twice in the fourth inning and added three more in the fifth to remain unbeaten on the year. The Mustangs, held to just five hits, fell to 3-1 for the season.

Busby, a junior second baseman, doubled to the gap in left-center field, driving in two runs in the fifth inning for Cal Poly. He doubled again in the seventh and advanced to third on a wild pitch, but was left stranded there.

Busby (pictured at right) was the lone Mustang to collect more than one hit. Pinch hitter Denver Chavez added a double with two outs in the ninth.

Santa Clara's eight-hit offensive attack included a single and double each by right fielder Lucas Herbst and left fielder Pat Stover. Shortstop Justin Viele also doubled for the Broncos.

Stover's double knocked in the first run of the game in the fourth and designated hitter T.J. Braff grounded out to drive in another run for a 2-0 Santa Clara lead.

In the fifth, center fielder Matt Ozanne singled to drive in a run, Herbst grounded out for an RBI and first baseman Andrew Biancardi's squeeze bunt gave Santa Clara a 5-0 cushion.

Cal Poly answered with two in the bottom of the fifth, but failed to score the rest of the way, leaving runners at first and second with nobody out in the sixth, first and third with two outs in the seventh and another runner at second in the ninth.

Cal Poly used five pitchers in the game. Starter Danny Zandona (0-1), a freshman right-hander, allowed four runs and five hits in four-plus innings in absorbing the loss. He walked one and struck out four.

The four Mustang relievers -- Reed Reilly (two innings), Taylor Chris (one inning), Nick Grim (one inning) and Chase Johnson (one inning) combined to allow just one run and three hits in five innings.

Winning pitcher Powell Fansler (2-0) gave up two runs and two hits in five innings with two walks and four strikeouts. He retired the first 11 Mustang batters of the game.

Cal Poly plays its next nine games on the road, starting with a four-game series at Loyola Marymount over the weekend. Friday's game at George C. Page Stadium starts at 2 p.m., followed by a 10 a.m. doubleheader Saturday and a 1 p.m. finale Sunday.