Cal Poly Avenges March Loss to Santa Clara With 10-6 Victory

Cal Poly Avenges March Loss to Santa Clara With 10-6 Victory

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Shortstop Peter Van Gansen's second three-run home run in four games broke open a 6-4 contest as Cal Poly avenged a loss in March to Santa Clara with a 10-6 victory Tuesday night at Stephen Schott Stadium.

The non-conference baseball win lifted Cal Poly's overall mark to 17-20. The Mustangs are 16-14 since losing six of their first seven games.

Santa Clara, which blanked Cal Poly 3-0 on March 3 in Baggett Stadium on a combined three-hitter by Keith George and Reece Karalus, fell to 16-23 with Tuesday's loss.

Van Gansen (pictured at right), who did not have any home runs in his first 149 games as a Mustang, smashed a three-run homer to right last Friday at UC Santa Barbara and duplicated the feat in the sixth inning Tuesday night. He now has 24 RBI this season.

Cal Poly scored four times before the first out was recorded in the first inning as the first six batters reached base with hits. Brian Mundell and Brett Barbier both drove in two runs with doubles for the early lead.

John Schuknecht's RBI single in the third inning and Zack Zehner's sacrifice fly in the fourth maintained Cal Poly's four-run cushion at 6-2.

Santa Clara trimmed the deficit to 6-4 in the fifth on Stevie Berman's two-run home run off the roof of the batting cage beyond the left-field fence, setting the stage for Van Gansen's blast to right.

The Mustangs added a run in the eighth on a wild pitch with the bases loaded.

Freshman right-hander Jarred Zill (2-1) benefitted the most from Cal Poly's 11-hit offensive attack, earning the victory as he allowed two runs and four hits in five innings with one walk and two strikeouts.

Senior southpaw Taylor Chris was summoned from the bullpen after Santa Clara scored twice in the eighth inning and secured three fly ball outs while senior right-hander Danny Zandona tossed a scoreless ninth with two strikeouts to preserve the win for Cal Poly.

The loss went to Santa Clara starter Peter Hendron (2-2) as he allowed all four runs in the first inning. The Broncos used seven pitchers on "staff day."

Van Gansen, Mark Mathias and Tommy Pluschkell each had two of Cal Poly's 11 hits. Mathias also drew three walks and scored four times.

Santa Clara collected 12 hits, including three each by Berman and Braden Frankfort. Berman drove in three runs.

Cal Poly returns home to play its next two Big West Conference series in Baggett Stadium, hosting Long Beach State this weekend and Cal State Northridge the following weekend.

First pitch for both series is set for 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 1 o'clock Sunday.