SANTA BARBARA, Calif.— UC Santa Barbara won its fifth straight game Friday night taking its series opener with Cal State Bakersfield 5-2. The Gauchos scored all their runs in three straight innings and freshman shortstop Jordan Sprinkle headlined going 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles and solo home run.
Michael McGreevy (9-1) took the mound for UCSB and picked up his ninth win of the season tossing seven innings of work and only allowing two earned to the Roadrunners. He struck out five before handing the ball over to Carter Benbrook who entered in the eighth to earn his team-best fifth save of the season.
UCSB got its first run across in the second time through the order as Jordan Sprinkle notched his first hit of the night on a one-out double down the left line. He was brought home two at-bats by Zach Rodriguez, who collected an RBI double to left center to make it 1-0.
Just a half inning later the Runners got on the board with a two-spot in the top of the fourth to take its first lead of the night 2-1, but the Gauchos answered in the bottom half once again collecting a pair of doubles. This time it was McClain O'Connor taking a two-out double off the left field wall and coming around to tie the game at 2-2 on an RBI double down the right line.
UCSB put up a three-spot in the bottom of the fifth to regain the lead 5-2 with the first five batters all reaching base. Sprinkle got it going crushing a lead-off home run over the left field wall to give UCSB the lead 3-2. He now has six total knocks on the year.
Marcos Castanon, who rejoined the starting lineup for the first time since late-march, reached on an error and brought home Cole Cummings. Christian Kirtley ended the inning with a sac-fly to score Rodriguez and give UCSB its fifth run of the night.
Carter Benbrook entered in the top of the eighth inheriting a pair of Roadrunners on the basepaths and did not waiver striking out the first batter he saw. He would strand three Runners to get out of the inning and retired all three batters in the ninth to finish the game.
Rodriguez ended the contest going 2-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI, and Broc Mortensen went a perfect 2-for-2. The Gauchos out-hit the Runners 12-9 with eight different players notching hits, including Castanon who collected a seventh-inning single.
UCSB will look to make it seven straight and take the series in tomorrow's doubleheader.