The 25th-ranked UCLA Baseball team scored three runs in the first two innings and never looked back, defeating the UC Irvine Anteaters, 5-0, at Jackie Robinson Stadium on Tuesday night.
Freshman Grant Dyer picked up his second win of the year for the Bruins, tossing seven innings of shutout ball and striking out six. Evan Manarino suffered the loss for the Anteaters, lasting just 1.1 innings and giving up three runs on five hits.
The Bruins jumped on UC Irvine early, scoring a pair of runs in the bottom of the first. Sophomore Christoph Bono smacked a double to left with one out before sophomore Ty Moore reached on a walk with two outs, bringing up freshman Luke Persico. Persico came through for the Bruins, lacing a double down the left field line to score Bono and Moore to make it 2-0 UCLA.
UCLA would chase Manarino from the game in the bottom of the second, hitting three straight singles with one out to load the bases. Bono then stepped in and added to UCLA’s lead with a sacrifice fly to left that scored Chatterton, bringing the Bruin lead up to three.
Dyer would make that lead hold up, as he continually shut down the UC Irvine offense while allowing just two runners to reach second in his seven innings of work. The Bruins then added gave Dyer some more run support in the bottom of the seventh, scoring two more to give UCLA a five-run advantage. Senior Pat Gallagher and Chatterton led off the frame with back-to-back singles before moving up to second and third on a wild pitch by UC Irvine pitcher Mitch Merten. Senior Brian Carroll then placed a single to right, scoring Gallagher to make it 4-0. Another sacrifice fly by Bono on the next at-bat brought home Chatterton and UCLA took its 5-0 lead to the eighth.
Carroll and Chatterton each recorded two hits in the ballgame, with Chatterton scoring two runs and Carroll logging a RBI. Persico and Bono each had two RBI in the game as well while Bono added a run scored.
UCLA (9-7) opens up Pac-12 play this weekend as the Bruins will head up to the Bay Area to play a three game series at California (10-5) from Friday, March 14 to Sunday, March 16. Game times are 7 p.m., 6 p.m. and 2 p.m. respectively and Sunday’s game will be televised live by the Pac-12 Networks.
Game Notes: UCLA extended its winning streak over the Anteaters to five straight games dating back to 2012...Brian Carroll has now reached base safely in 12 consecutive games and recorded at least one hit in his last six…Christoph Bono has now logged six hits in his last 12 at-bats…the Bruins improved their record to 38-8 when scoring first and 22-4 when scoring in the first inning in the last two seasons…this was UCLA’s third shutout win of the season (other two were North Carolina State on March 1 and Michigan on March 2)…Grant Dyer’s seven innings pitched and six strikeouts were new season-highs for the freshman…Dyer allowed just three base runners in his first five innings and with his seven shutout innings lowered his ERA to 2.62 on the year...UCLA is now 21-7 in its last 28 games against Big West opponents.