Offense Stays Hot as Dirtbags Win 9-3 at UC Davis
LBSU recorded 16 hits for the second game in a row, winning again at UC Davis, 9-3.
DAVIS, Calif. - For the second straight day, Long Beach State (27-14, 12-2 Big West) recorded a season- best 16 hits, this time in a 9-3 win over UC Davis (12-22, 5-9 Big West) to clinch the series on the road. Laine Huffman led the attack on Saturday with a career-best day at the plate, going 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs.
Again the Dirtbags turned it on late in the game, scoring the decisive six runs over the final four innings, with at least one run in every frame. Unlike Friday’s win, it was the bottom of the Long Beach order that came through. The 6-9 hitters for the Dirtbags were a combined 11-for-19 (.579) on Saturday, with eight runs scored, six RBIs, two doubles, a triple, and a home run.
Garrett Nelson had his best game of the season, going 3-for-5 at the plate with a pair of runs scored and a two-run triple. He had hits in his final three at bats to set a new career high for a single game. David Banuelos also produced on Saturday, scoring a team-high three runs while hitting his sixth home run of the season in the sixth to put Long Beach State in the lead for good.
On the mound, junior RHP John Sheaks earned his seventh win of the season and now leads the Big West in wins by himself. He battled through 5.0 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and a pair of walks, but stranded seven men on base including two in each of the first three innings. Tyler Radcliffe tossed two scoreless innings in relief, followed by a situational strikeout from Zak Baayoun, 0.2 innings from Eli Villalobos and a perfect ninth with two strikeouts from Connor Riley.
UC Davis took the lead in the bottom of the first, but LBSU answered with three runs in the top of the second. Huffman’s two-out, two-run double past third base was the big hit in the inning, and the shortstop would later score on one of six UC Davis errors on the afternoon.
The Aggies would tie the game at 3-3 in the fifth inning on a solo home run, but would not score again as LBSU scored six unanswered to end the game. Banuelos launched a solo homer to left to put the Dirtbags in front before Huffman singled in Nelson to make it a 5-3 lead. Another two-out rally in the seventh led to two runs as Nelson tripled to right center to plate Banuelos and Jarren Duran. LBSU added insurance with an unearned run in the eighth and a sac fly by Brock Lundquist in the ninth.
LBSU will look to sweep a second straight Big West road series on Sunday as RHP Dave Smith (4-1, 1.50 ERA) takes on LHP Robert Garcia (1-4, 4.31 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.
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