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February 18, 2014

No. 22 Cal Poly Earns Second Shutout, Blanks Santa Clara 8-0

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Junior right fielder Nick Torres drove in three runs and freshman right-hander Justin Calomeni struck out nine in his first collegiate start as No. 22 Cal Poly blanked Santa Clara 8-0 in a non-conference baseball game Tuesday night at Stephen Schott Stadium.

Torres doubled home two runs in the third inning and his sacrifice fly in the seventh gave the unbeaten Mustangs (4-0) a five-run lead.

Calomeni, who attended high school at nearby Bellarmine Prep, pitched five-plus innings with nine strikeouts and just one walk. He threw 76 pitches and allowed just one hit, a second-inning double, before retiring 11 Santa Clara (1-4) batters in a row.

Junior southpaw Taylor Chris worked out of a two-on, nobody-out jam in the sixth and pitched two innings, allowing two hits and striking out three. Freshman Nick Suniga secured two outs in the eighth, junior right-hander Danny Zandona also retired two Bronco hitters and freshman southpaw Jearl Jesson struck out the final two batters of the game.

In all, the five Mustang pitchers combined for 15 strikeouts and scattered five hits. In four games, Cal Poly pitchers have struck out 48 and issued nine walks, giving up just three runs and 16 hits in 36 innings.

Torres and senior first baseman Tim Wise both had two of Cal Poly's 11 hits and junior left fielder Zack Zehner belted a solo home run leading off the third inning, Cal Poly's second homer of the season.

Zehner's round-tripper gave Cal Poly a 1-0 lead and, four batters later, Torres doubled to drive home two more runs for a 3-0 Mustang lead.

Cal Poly added single runs in the fifth and seven frames. Wise singled and eventually scored on a sacrifice fly by sophomore designated hitter Brian Mundell in the fifth and senior catcher Chris Hoo drew a walk in the seventh and came home on the sacrifice fly by Torres.

The Mustangs completed the scoring in the ninth with a trio of runs on RBI doubles by Chris Hoo, Wise and redshirt freshman Brett Barbier.

Santa Clara used seven pitchers in the game. Starter Reece Karalus (0-1) took the loss, allowing three runs and three hits in 2 2/3 innings.

Cal Poly, in a stretch of 11 of 12 games on the road, plays a three-game weekend series at defending national champion UCLA.