LONG BEACH – Right-hander Tanner Brown allowed just four baserunners over eight dominant shutout innings to lead Long Beach State to a 2-0 win over UC Santa Barbara in Sunday’s series finale at Blair Field, allowing the Dirtbags to salvage a game in the series.
UCSB (20-6, 2-1 Big West) previously clinched the series with back-to-back wins on Friday night and Saturday afternoon, handing LBSU (17-10, 1-2) its first series loss of the 2016 season.
The shutout spoiled a solid start for UCSB righty Joe Record, who gave up just three hits and one earned run while pitching into the seventh inning. It was a strong bounceback effort for Record after allowing five runs in four innings last weekend at USC.
A tough luck loser, Record fell to 3-3 on the season.
After the Plancetia, Calif. native went nine up-nine down over the first three innings of the game, LBSU broke through for the game’s first run in the fourth inning.
Shorstop Garrett Hampson did most of the work for the Dirtbags in the rally, opening up the frame with a single into center before putting himself into scoring position by stealing second with Alex Muzzi at the plate. Hampson would come around to score one batter later when Brock Lundquist shot a base hit into right field.
The Dirtbags would later add an unearned run in the seventh inning when reliever Trevor Bettencourt walked David Banuelos with the bases loaded.
But LBSU’s run in the fourth proved to more than enough for Brown, who effectively limited the Gaucho offense on Sunday.
UCSB only had a runner reach as far as third base on two occassions, in the fourth and ninth innings.
Leadoff hitter Andrew Calica helped the Gauchos threaten in the fourth, reaching on his 14th hit by pitch of the season before stealing second and moving to third on a sac bunt.
Shortstop Clay Fisher gave UCSB one last shot in the ninth, singling up the middle to lead off before reaching third on a wild pitch and grounder to the right side. However, LBSU closer Chris Rivera recovered to get Billy Fredrick to bounce out to second base to end the contest for his league-leading 11th save of the year.
The Gauchos have their conference bye this week, but will travel to the College of Charleston for a three-game set starting on Friday.