Big Fifth Inning Leads Stanford Past UCLA In Series Finale

UCLA could only watch as Stanford won the game and series (Photo Credit: Scott Wu)

One inning did UCLA in. They got off to a fast start and the bullpen was strong late, but it didn't matter because a big fifth inning, and a disappearing Bruin offense, led Stanford past UCLA for a 7-2 win on Sunday at Jackie Robinson Stadium. The game gave the Cardinal the series and dropped the Bruins to 28-12 on the year, and more importantly, two games behind first place Oregon in the Pac-12.

Zack Weiss struggled for the second straight week, failing to make it out of the fifth inning. He gave up five runs in 4.2 innings, walking three and hitting two batters to erase a solid three hits allowed. Grant Watson allowed a run without retiring a batter and David Berg allowed a run in his 3.1 innings before Ryan Deeter worked a perfect ninth.

It wasn't as if the Bruins gave Weiss or the rest of the UCLA pitchers much support anyways. They totalled just six hits in the contest and the managed only three in the final seven innings. Cody Keefer had two hits and stole a base, while Cody Regis and Trevor Brown were the only other men to reach twice, with each picking up a hit and either walking or getting hit by a pitch.

The Bruins put the scoreboard to work early on and it started with Tyler Heineman getting hit by a pitch with one out in the first. Keefer followed with a single and then Gelalich added a single of his own, scoring Heineman for an early lead.

A leadoff triple by Pat Valaika got the Bruins going in the second inning and when Beau Amaral lifted a fly ball to center with one out, Valaika was able to tag and score to double the UCLA lead. Early on, it looked like the Bruin offense was clicking, and so was Weiss.

Weiss didn't have much trouble in the first four inning, facing some trouble, but nothing too worrisome. He was working efficiently and seemed to be in a groove, but that fell apart in the fifth.

Stanford put it all together with two outs in the fifth and it began with a hit by pitch. Brett Michael Doran then hit a hard ball down the third base line that Regis just couldn't get to and it went for a double. A walk followed to load the bases then after getting ahead in the count 0-2 to the next batter, Weiss threw three balls before hitting the batter. That forced in a run and Brian Ragira made it that much worse for Weiss, hitting a two-RBI single for a 3-2 Stanford lead. That was the end for Weiss, but Watson didn't do any better, walking the first man he faced to load the bases before surrendering a two-RBI single of his own. That brought on Berg, but he also allowed a single, this one scoring one run and the Cardinal had turned a 2-0 deficit into a 6-2 lead, all with two outs.

A RBI double by Stephen Piscotty extended the Stanford lead in the sixth and despite the Bruins' bullpen locking it down from there on, the offense just couldn't get anything going. A one out single by Keefer in the seventh, even though he was left there, and a leadoff single by Regis in the eighth, which was promptly erased by a double play, was all the Bruins had to call a "rally" as the Cardinal grabbed a vital series in Westwood.

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