Solid Tigers take series win at Santa Clara

Solid Tigers take series win at Santa Clara

Pacific baseball (19-16, 6-8 WCC) blew up offensively on Santa Clara on Saturday at Schott Stadium in Santa Clara in a 13-3 victory.

The Tigers won the game along with the series behind big days from senior Tyler Ryan and sophomore Bryce Kirk. Sophomore Alex LeForestier chipped in three runs scored and continued to put his defensive prowess at third base on display with several nice plays including a diving play that ended the game.

While the offense did its job, Pacific's pitching held its own. Sophomore Hayden Pearce got the start and allowed two runs through the first two-thirds of an inning, but held out and got the win with a career-best four strikeouts. Sophomore Lucas Sweany came in and worked the final three innings grabbing his third save of the year.

While the result was all Tigers, the first three innings were all Santa Clara. The Broncos jumped out front in the bottom of the first when Jake Macnichols hit a two run home run, his second in as many days. Bronco pitching did its part to keep the lead in the first three innings. Their starter, Keegan McCarville didn't allow a baserunner through the first three innings.

Freshman James Arakawa got on to lead off the inning in the top of the fourth, he was the Tigers' first runner on base. Two batters later, junior catcher James Free doubled to score him to make it 2-1. LeForestier got on with a single, then in the next at-bat, Tyler Ryan hit a three-run homer to give Pacific their first lead of the game.

In the sixth, the offense got going again with another leadoff walk, this time to LeForestier. Two batters later, Kirk hit an RBI single to score LeForestier and make it 3-1. A perfectly executed sacrifice bunt by Kevin Sandri allowed Ryan to score from third and two batters later, sophomore Wyatt Hoffman singled to score Kirk to make it 5-1.

Pearce allowed a hit in the bottom of the sixth before completing the inning and exiting the game. He didn't allow another run after the two-run homer in the first and struck out and career-high four batters. He allowed seven hits in the game and didn't walk anyone. It was his second-straight quality start.

The Tiger offense kept clicking in the top of the seventh when yet another leadoff walk, this time to Keaton Glover started the Tigers off. Free was hit by a pitch and walk to LeForestier loaded the bases. Ryan hit a sac fly to left to score Glover and make the score 6-1. It was Ryan's fourth RBI of the day and his seventh in the last two games. Four RBIs in a game was a new career-high for Ryan.

In the next at-bat, Kirk crushed his first career homer, and a three-run shot, to make it 11-1. Four RBIs in a game was also a career high for the sophomore.

In the top of the eighth, the Tigers led off the inning with a walk again when Hoffman got on. He would come around to score on a wild pitch later in the inning. A single for LeForestier scored Arakawa later in the frame to make it 13-1.

Sweany allowed a run in the bottom of the eighth off of a solo-homerun, but he persevered and worked the three-inning save, his third of the year. He gave up just a hit and a walk while striking out two in the contest.

Pacific scored 13 runs for the third time in a game this year and the second time this week. It is still Pacific's high for runs in a game this year. The Tigers have scored 35 runs in the last three games.

Pacific goes for the sweep tomorrow at Schott Stadium in Santa Clara in a noon game. Junior right-handed pitcher Ryan Shreve, who has been Pacific most effective starter throughout the year, will take the mound for Pacific.