No. 21 UCSB (18-6, 7-1) took its series with Hawai’i on day two of the weekend, topping the Rainbow Warriors 8-3. The Gauchos collected a season-high-tying 15 hits in the contest and scored in five straight innings.
Mike Gutierrez (4-1) earned the start and tossed six full innings of three-run ball with five strikeouts. Matt Ager came in his relief to earn the three-inning save allowing just one hit in the appearance.
Zander Darby went 3-for-4 with three RBI and Jason Willow stayed hot going 2-for-3 with two runs, a double, and a walk.
Broc Mortensen, Nick Vogt, and Christian Kirtley all had two hits with Kirtley going yard for the third time this season.
UCSB picked off three runners, caught a ‘Bow stealing, and threw out a runner trying to extend a double into a triple to keep Hawai’i off the scoreboard.
Hawai’i got its leadoff runner aboard in eight innings and got on the board first with two runs in the top of the first.
Mortensen and Willow singled in the bottom of the second to get aboard and would come around to tie the game on one swing as Darby doubled over the head of the Hawai’i centerfielder.
The Rainbow Warriors quickly regained the lead in the top of the third going up 3-2 but it would be their last run of the night.
UCSB tied the game again with an RBI groundout by Johnson in the bottom of the third and took its first lead in the fourth as Willow scored on a sac-fly from Darby.
It was John Newman Jr.’s time in the fifth as the DH singled up the middle to score Nick Vogt from third.
With two outs in the sixth the Bows intentionally walked the hot bat of Johnson but it would prove to be the wrong choice as Kirtley stepped into the box and crushed a three-run home run to left-center to put the Gauchos up 8-3.
Ager nearly faced the minimum allowing just one hit and an HBP in his three innings of work.
UCSB will look to sweep the series Sunday afternoon in game three. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.