Cal Poly Shut Out for Fourth Time This Season as UC Irvine Posts 8-0 Win

Cal Poly Shut Out for Fourth Time This Season as UC Irvine Posts 8-0 Win

IRVINE, Calif. – Sophomore right-hander Trenton Denholm scattered four hits over eight scoreless innings as UC Irvine clinched its three-game Big West Conference baseball series against Cal Poly with an 8-0 victory Saturday night on Cicerone Field inside Anteater Ballpark.

One day after Andre Pallante earned his eighth win in a 7-3 Anteater triumph, Denholm (8-3) picked up his eighth win by striking out 10 Mustangs and allowing just two walks.

The loss dropped Cal Poly two games behind first-place UC Santa Barbara in the race for the Big West title. The Gauchos improved to 14-3 in conference games with a 13-1 win at home over Long Beach State. UC Irvine climbed into a second-place tie with Cal Poly, both 12-5 in the conference.

Cal Poly, 23-25 overall, had just six baserunners in the game and was shut out for the fourth time this season.

UC Irvine struck for a run in the second inning, three in the third and two more in the fourth for a 6-0 lead. The Anteaters added two in the seventh off the Mustang bullpen.

Cal Poly fourth-year junior Bobby Ay (7-1) suffered his first loss of the year, allowing six runs and seven hits over five innings with two walks and five strikeouts. Ay was 7-0 with a 2.50 ERA over his last nine starts entering Saturday's game.

In his second relief appearance on the mound this week following a four-week absence from the weekend rotation due to an arm injury, Jarred Zill (pictured above) retired the side in order for the second time in a row and freshman Bryan Woo struck out the side in the eighth.

Cal Poly's four hits were singles by Tate Samuelson and Myles Emmerson in the first inning, Jack Kuzma in the fifth and Nick DiCarlo in the seventh.

Back-to-back triples by Christian Koss and Mikey Filia tallied the first Anteater run in the second. Adrian Damla's two-run double highlighted the three-run third-inning rally and Brandon Lewis hit his 13th home run of the season, a two-run shot, in the fourth.

A Mustang error and a sacrifice fly by Koss accounted for the two runs in the seventh.

Lewis had three of UC Irvine's 10 hits while Damla and Koss both had two hits and a pair of RBIs.

The Mustangs were without the services of freshman designated hitter Conagher Sands, who sprained an ankle stepping on a baseball during batting practice. Sands, hitting .351 with a 21-game hitting streak, is listed as day to day.

Final game of the series will be played Sunday at 1 o'clock. Cal Poly will send sophomore southpaw Andrew Alvarez (1-2, 4.50 ERA) to the mound against UC Irvine junior right-hander Tanner Brubaker (5-2, 2.39 ERA).