DAVIS, Calif. – Cal Poly produced double-digit hits for the fifth time in six games and took advantage of seven UC Davis errors for a 9-6 victory Saturday afternoon inside Swimley Field at Dobbins Stadium.
For the third straight weekend, Cal Poly clinched a Big West baseball series in the finale of the three-game set, two games to one, and improved to 15-19 overall and 6-3 in conference contests. Coach Larry Lee's Mustangs also won series against UC Irvine and Hawai'I on the final day.
UC Davis fell to 10-19 and 3-6.
Cal Poly overcame 2-0 and 3-1 deficits for the victory, scoring five unearned runs thanks to the seven miscues by the Aggies, five of them throwing errors by the pitchers.
First baseman Michael Sanderson (pictured at right) and third baseman Bradlee Beesley (pictured above) both had three hits to spark Cal Poly's 13-hit offensive attack. Center fielder Alex McKenna added a pair of doubles to lift his average to .360, one point behind Sanderson's .361 mark.
Beesley, a .160 hitter three weeks into the season, is now hitting .299 with 10 multiple-hit contests.
UC Davis grabbed a 2-0 lead in the third inning on three hits and a Mustang error. After Cal Poly tallied one in the fourth on an RBI single by catcher Nick Meyer, the Aggies got the run back in the fifth on Jacob Thomas' RBI double.
Cal Poly caught UC Davis with two runs in the sixth. Shortstop Kyle Marinconz doubled to knock in the first run and Sanderson singled to tie the game at 3-3.
The Mustangs gained the lead for good with three unearned runs in the seventh. First three batters reached base via throwing errors by UC Davis pitchers, two of them scoring, and Beesley capped the rally with an RBI single up the middle.
Cal Poly broke the game open with three more runs in the ninth. Beesley led off with a triple and came home on an error. Left fielder Josh George added a two-run double.
Senior right-hander Slater Lee (3-2), the third of four Cal Poly pitchers, earned the victory. He faced the minimum eight batters during his first 2 2/3 innings before tiring in the ninth when UC Davis scored three times.
Sophomore right-hander Michael Clark notched his fifth save by getting the final two outs.
Caleb Van Blake and Ryan Hooper each collected two of UC Davis's 10 hits.
UC Davis used eight pitchers in the game. Chris Brown, the second hurler, suffered the loss, giving up the go-ahead run in the seventh inning.
The Mustangs are alone in third place in the Big West at 6-3, one game behind first-place Long Beach State (7-2) and a half-game back of second-place Cal State Fullerton (5-1), which had the bye in the conference schedule this week.
Cal Poly wraps up a four-game road trip Tuesday night at CSU Bakersfield (19-12) before hosting Cal State Fullerton (23-11) for a three-game Big West series Friday through Sunday inside Baggett Stadium.
Photos courtesy of Jack Duffy