BERKELEY - Despite the efforts of freshman third baseman Lucas Erceg and a key pinch hit RBI double by junior Brenden Farney, Cal baseball dropped a 4-3 decision to No. 6-ranked Washington (26-7-1, 13-3) Thursday night at Evans Diamond.
The Huskies had broken open a 1-1 ballgame with three runs in the top of the eighth inning on three straight two-out RBI singles to take a 4-1 lead. But, in the bottom of the eighth the Bears (15-18, 4-9) mounted a two-out rally with a single from senior designated hitter Devon Rodriguez (who later scored on a wild pitch), a double from sophomore first baseman Nick Halamandaris and key pinch hit RBI double by Farney to get within, 4-3.
Unfortunately for Cal, Husky reliever Troy Rallings (fifth save, 1.1 innings, two hits, one strikeout) was able to get Erceg to ground out to second base to end the inning.
Eariler in the game, Erceg had hit his first collegiate home run in the fifth inning to tie the game, 1-1, and then got a single in the seventh inning to finish the evening 2-for-4.
The losing pitcher for Cal was freshman Daulton Jefferies (2-4), who threw a solid 7.2 innigns with six hits, two runs, one walk and two strikeouts.
The Bears will next play the Huskies in the second game of the three-game series Friday, April 18 at 7 p.m. at Evans Diamond.