It was an afternoon of missed opportunities for the UCLA baseball team yesterday, as they failed to get timely hits with runners in scoring position, dropping the contest to Gonzaga, 6-1. Brandon Bailey threw seven scoreless innings for the Zags to secure the win. Grant Watson took the loss, surrendering 2 runs (only one earned) in six innings. UCLA (32-11; 16-5 PAC 12) and Gonzaga (21-22; 10-11 WCC) will battle for the series win this afternoon at 1 p.m. PT at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
After Gonzaga plated one run in the 1st inning to take a 1-0 lead, UCLA was unable to capitalize on two excellent run scoring chances in the 4th and 6th innings. In the 4th inning, after a Luke Persico single and a Chris Keck double put runners on first and third with no outs, Daryl Miller, Jr. popped out, Christoph Bono struck out swinging, and Trent Chatterton ended the inning on a fly out. In the 6th, Ty Moore doubled to start the inning, and was bunted over to third by Luke Persico. Keck then walked to put runners at the corners with one out. This time, Miller, Jr. stuck out swinging and Bono popped out.
Gonzaga put a crooked 5 on the board in the top of the 7th inning. It all started with an error by Chatterton. Tucker Forbes came in to pitch and was able to retire the next two Bulldog batters. It then went walk, RBI single, Hunter Virant replaced Forbes, walk, Cody Poteet replaced Virant, 2 RBI double, and 2 RBI single, before the Bruins retired the side. All five runs were unearned.
This afternoon, Gonzaga will send Eli Morgan (0-0, 2.16 ERA) to the mound. Morgan, a freshman, is on an impressive scoreless inning streak, having shut out the competition in his last 11 and 2/3 innings. All of those innings, however, have been in a relief role. This will be Morgan’s first collegiate start.
Yet again, the Bruins will look to freshman right-hander, Griffin Canning (7-1, 2.72 ERA), to secure a series win in the third game of the series. Today will be fifth time in the last five series in which UCLA and its opponent split the first two games. In each of the last four series, the Bruins managed to win in the series finale. Can they do it again today?
Come out to Jackie Robinson Stadium to enjoy a beautiful day for baseball. The game will not be televised, but John Ramey and Tim Wilhelm will have the call via streaming online audio or you can follow live statistics.
This is your UCLA v. Gonzaga Game Three Open Thread. Go Bruins!!!