Tiger offense erupts to take series

Tiger offense erupts to take series

What looked to potentially be a showdown between two tough starting pitchers, turned into an offense rout for Pacific baseball (15-13, 3-6 WCC) in a 13-3 win in the series finale over Pepperdine (14-10, 5-4 WCC) on Sunday at Klein Family Field.

The Tigers took on the 2018 West Coast Conference Pitcher of the Year, Jonathan Pendergast, but used a six-run fourth inning to run him from the game. The Tigers plated nine-runs in the first four innings and were led by sophomore Alex LeForestier who hit his first career home run as part of a 3-5 day with 4 RBI. Freshman James Arakawa belted his first career homer as well as his first career double. Junior outfielder Keaton Glover went 3-4 with an RBI and junior catcher James Free had a three-RBI day.

Pendergast faced off with Pacific's junior Ryan Shreve, who has led the Tiger staff with a 2.40 ERA and a 1.35 ERA in his three WCC starts so far. However, neither starter pitched beyond the fourth inning. The Tigers tagged Pendergast for nine runs on nine hits with three walks. It was his shortest start of the year and just the second time this year that he didn't pitch into at least the sixth inning; the one other time came in a loss at No. 4 Vanderbilt in which he exited after four and a third.

For Shreve, he fared far better but exited after four complete after allowing five hits and two earned runs. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Henrik Reinertsen took over for Shreve and earned the win 

A single for LeForestier opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning for the Tigers to make it 1-0. Two more runs crossed in the third inning when LeForestier hit his first career homer to score Glover to make it 3-0.

Pepperdine narrowed the gap briefly with a two-run top of the fourth inning, but Pacific's six-run bottom of the fourth blew the game wide open. The tone was set with Arakawa's leadoff double off of the wall in left field. The Tigers went on to score a run on a fielder choice then strung together four-straight hits to plate four more runs to make it a 7-2 lead. A wild pitch scored another run before junior Carter Hayes doubled to score LeForestier and make it a 9-2 lead through four innings.

The offense kept clicking in the fifth inning when senior Bradley Jekich homered. Later in the inning, Free doubled to left field to score senior Kevin Sandri and junior Grant Mona to make it 12-2.

In the sixth, Arakawa hit a towering homer to left-field to make it 13-2. 

The Waves scored a consolation run in the top of the seventh inning to close the scoring at 13-3. 

Pacific looks to keep rolling on Tuesday in a mid-week game at UC Davis at 2:3-, the Tigers have already won a Tuesday game in Davis this year. WCC play continues next weekend when the Tigers head up to Spokane to take on the defending conference champs, Gonzaga in a three-game series that begins on Friday.