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Chris Keck (Photo by Don Liebig)
No. 22 UCLA Baseball Drops Series Opener to Washington State, 2-0
By: UCLA Athletics

The 22nd-ranked UCLA Baseball team fell to Washington State in the series opener on Friday night, losing to the Cougars, 2-0, at Jackie Robinson Stadium.

Jason Monda earned the win for the Cougars with 7.1 scoreless innings and five strikeouts. Sophomore James Kaprielian took the loss for the Bruins, pitching six innings and allowing two runs on eight hits. Kaprielian also struck out three. Ian Hamilton picked up his seventh save of the year for Washington State as well.

Washington State got on the board in the top of the second to take a one-run lead. With two outs and Nick Tanielu on third, Ian Sagdal hit a single to left to plate Tanielu and give the Cougars the early 1-0 lead. The score stayed that way for the next few innings but Washington State threatened again in the top of the fifth. Kaprielian put runners at first and second with two outs, bringing up Collin Slaybaugh. Slaybaugh hit a single up the middle, but sophomore shortstop Trent Chatterton was able to stop the ball from reaching the outfield. Sagdal attempted to score from second on the play, but Chatterton was able to fire a throw home and get Sagdal at the plate to keep the deficit at one.

The Cougars would get an insurance in the top of the sixth though. After Tanielu singled with two outs and moved to second on a wild pitch, Ben Roberts laced a single to right-center to bring home Tanielu and make it 2-0 Washington State.

UCLA would not go quietly though as the Bruins threatened to score in the bottom of the eighth. With one out, freshman Dominic Miroglio was able to draw a pinch-hit walk before Chatterton singled him over to third. Freshman Brett Stephens drew another pinch-hit walk to load the bases, but senior Brian Carroll and sophomore Christoph Bono both struck out to end the inning. UCLA could not muster anything in its half of the ninth and the Cougars went on to win the game, 2-0.

Freshman Luke Persico led the Bruins with a 2-4 night while sophomore Ty Moore, junior Chris Keck and Chatterton added a hit apiece. Sagdal led the Cougars by going 4-4 with a RBI.

UCLA (12-8, 3-1 Pac-12) and Washington State (9-9, 3-1 Pac-12) will continue their three-game series tomorrow afternoon at 2 p.m. at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Junior Grant Watson will toe the slab for the Bruins.

Game Notes: Ty Moore matched a career-high by hitting safely in his fourth straight game and has now reached base safely in nine consecutive games...tonight was Luke Persico’s sixth multi-game of the season…Brian Carroll’s streak of reaching base safely was snapped at 15 straight games…Christoph Bono’s seven-game hitting streak was also snapped…UCLA’s bullpen has not allowed a run in 10.1 consecutive innings dating back to March 9…James Kaprielian has now given up two runs or less in five of his six starts this season.

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