Washington picked up their first hit of the game with one out in the first inning, giving them hope that they might be able to rough up Nick Vander Tuig on Saturday evening at Jackie Robinson Stadium. But they didn't know it just the start of Vander Tuig's night marvelous night.
The junior struck out the next two batters to start a dominating complete game shutout that propelled UCLA to a 5-0 win over the Huskies. Vander Tuig scattered seven hits over the nine innings, only one of them for extra bases, and struck out eight without issuing a single walk. The wonderful start pushed the right-hander's record to 3-2 on the season, while the Bruins improved to 14-3 overall and 2-0 in Pac-12 play.
Vander Tuig got help from Christoph Bono, who followed up his walk-off hit in the first game of the series, which finished earlier in the day, with a two-hit day that including the first home run of the redshirt freshman's career. Brian Carroll, Cody Regis and Justin Hazard all added two hits of their own in the Bruins' 12-hit effort.
Carroll followed up Vander Tuig's two strikeouts to close the top of the first with a single to start the bottom half of the inning and Kevin Kramer added a walk to put two on with none out. Eric Filia then grounded to third, where an error allowed Carroll to come around and score. Kramer also took third on the error, allowing him to score on Chris Keck's groundout, giving the Bruins a 2-0 lead after one.
Vander Tuig allowed a hit in the second and third innings as well, but neither came especially close to scoring. Vander Tuig was poised and in composed in getting out of them, then threw just five pitches in a 1-2-3 fourth.
But as quickly as Vander Tuig retired the Huskies in the top of the fourth, Bono added to the UCLA lead even quicker in the bottom. Keck singled on the second pitch of the inning then Bono followed by jumping on the first pitch and crushing it over the right field fence that put UCLA up 4-0.
Despite having an even bigger lead, Vander Tuig didn't let up. He retired Washington in order in the fifth and after giving up a hit in a harmless sixth, he hurled another 1-2-3 inning against the hapless Huskies in the seventh.
UCLA added to their lead after the seventh inning stretch when Brett Urabe laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to score Filia, but that was just a momentary pleasant distraction from the show Vander Tuig was putting on.
The right-hander tossed another scoreless inning in the eighth before going back out for the ninth. John Savage gave him the chance to finish what he started and Vander Tuig tested the coach's faith when he allowed consecutive one-out singles, but he came back with a full count strikeout before picking up the last out of the game to finish off his splendid start, and the game.