HONOLULU, Hawaii— The No. 28 Gauchos earned their fifth series win of the season Sunday afternoon defeating host Hawai'i 9-1 in the final game of the weekend. UC Santa Barbara tallied seven runs in the first two innings while holding the Rainbow Warriors quiet throughout in its largest win of the series.
UCSB now boasts a 18-8 record with a 9-3 conference mark that puts them in second place in the Big West. UH falls to 12-10 and 4-8.
James Callahan (2-1) earned his second straight Sunday start and got the job done picking up the win for his squad. The freshman tossed 5.1 innings of one-run ball with the only run scoring on a balk in the fifth. He allowed just five hits while striking out six.
Following him out of the bullpen was Conner Dand who finished off the final 3.2 innings to earn his second save of the season. The senior allowed just one hit and one walk, while fanning three.
UCSB would hang a six on the board in the second inning with five straight batters reaching bases thanks to solid hitting and a pair of errors by the Bows' infield. Gianni Bloom and Zach Rodriguez each collected 2 RBI singles and Mortensen earned his second RBI of the afternoon on a single that blazed down the right field line. The Gauchos posted five hits in the inning and took a 7-0 lead.
The lone run for UH scored in the fifth to cut the lead 7-1.
In the seventh inning came a play never seen before as Sprinkle stepped into the box as the lead-off hitter for the Gauchos. In an 0-1 count, the shortstop took a ball over the right field wall for an opposite-field home run, the first of his career. Sprinkle's solo increased the lead to 8-1 and gave him a 2-for-5 mark with two runs and an RBI.
The final run of the weekend scored in the top of the eighth with Jason Willow singling down the right-field line to drive in Bryce Willits. Willits and Willow each finished the game with a pair of hits with both going 2-for-4.
UCSB will now return home for a four-game series with CSUN next weekend.