May 22, 2011
LOS ANGELES, CALIF -The No. 25-ranked California baseball team scored first, but was then limited to five hits, falling to No. 17 UCLA, 5-2, Sunday afternoon (May 21) in the third game of a three-game Pac-10 series at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Cal, which had shut out the Bruins, 4-0, Friday night and lost 2-1 on Saturday, dropped to 30-18 overall and 13-11 in the conference. UCLA improved to 31-20 and 16-8 in league play.
The Golden Bears scored the first run of the game in the top of the first inning when lead-off batter Austin Booker was hit by a pitch from the Bruins' freshman right-hander Adam Plutko (6-3, 8.0 innings, three hits, two runs, one walk, three strikeouts). Booker was advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt by junior shortstop Marcus Semien, and then scored on sophomore second baseman Tony Renda's RBI double to left-center field.
But Cal's early lead did not hold up as sophomore left-hander Justin Jones (7-5, 3.0 innings, six hits, three runs, two walks, two strikeouts) struggled, giving up a run in the bottom of the first inning and two runs in the third inning. Freshman left-hander Kyle Porter came in in relief of Jones and gave up a run (in the fourth inning) in 2.1 innings of work (two hits, one run, two walks, two strikeouts).
The Bears were able to get within, 4-2, with a run in the top of the fifth inning when freshman center fielder Louie Lechich hit his first collegiate homer with one out - a shot over the right field fence.
The score remained 4-2 until UCLA added another run in the bottom of the eighth inning when Cal closer Matt Flemer yielded a triple to the Bruins' Chris Giovinazzo, who then scored on Beau Amaral's single.
The Bears threatened in the top of the ninth when Renda and junior catcher Chadd Krist led-off with back-to-back singles off of UCLA reliever Nick Vander Tuig. But, junior right fielder Chad Bunting hit into a double play when he lined out to Vander Tuig, who then forced Krist out at first base. Cal's sophomore first baseman Devon Rodriguez flew out to center field to end the game.
Cal will conclude the regular season May 24 at Pacific and then host Bay Area rival Stanford for the last Pac-10 series of the year at Evans Diamond. Due to the Cardinal's schedule of finals, the Big Series will be a 2:30 p.m. start on Friday, May 27, and then a noon doubleheader on Saturday, May 28.