Moraga, CA - The Saint Mary's baseball team dropped both ends of a double header against visiting UC Riverside at Louis Guisto Field on Saturday. In the first game the Gaels were on the losing end of a complete game from the Highlanders, falling 1-0. In the second game a four run top of the ninth proved to be the difference as SMC fell, 8-5.
In game one, the Gaels (7-11-1) got a rocky start from starter Kyle Barraclough (1-3), the sophomore righty pitched five complete innings, allowing just four hits, one earned run. However, it was the walks that did Barraclough in, allowing six, to just two strike outs.
Reliever Taylor Reid pitched perhaps his best outing of the season, throwing four complete innings in relief, scattering three hits, giving up no runs, one walk and three strike outs. Reid showed exceptional command and even better stuff as his fastball topped out in the mid-90s.
However, the first game belonged to UC Riverside's starter Dustin Emmons (4-1) who made quick work of the Gaels, going nine complete, allowing just eight hits, no runs one walk and four strike outs.
The Highlanders (11-8) scored the winning run on Gaels mental error, with two outs and runners at second and third for UC Riverside, the Highlander's Trent Jemmett high a ground ball to third for what could have been a routine inning ending 5-3 put out, instead freshman Patrick Wisdom tagged the runner at second, allowing the runner at third to score.
In game two, the two sides battled, trading runs through most of the game. UCR scored first in the top of the second, on a controversial call. The original call at home that the Highlanders runner was thrown out at home ending the inning, was overruled by the first base umpire who said that Gaels' catcher Toby DeMello bobbled the ball, allowing UC Riverside to score.
Saint Mary's responded adding a run in the bottom of the second, third, and fourth, and added two runs in the bottom of the fifth to take a 5-2 lead. On the mound for the Gaels to start game two was freshman Patrick Keane, who went 2.1 innings, allowing seven hits, two runs, both earned no walks and a strike out.
Coming in on relief for the Gaels was junior Dorsey Ek, who continues his strong season, as he went 3.2 innings in relief, surrendering five hits, two runs, no walks and two strike outs.
With the Gaels up 5-4 in the top of the ninth, closer Brandon Berl (0-3) came out for his third inning of work, having shut down the Highlanders in the top of the seventh and eighth. However, today would not be his day, as the Highlanders scored four runs, off four hits. The big hit was a two-run homerun from UCR's Joey Gonzalez.
In the bottom of the ninth, UCR's reliever Mike Wolford (1-0) worked a scoreless ninth to earn his first win of the year.
The Gaels and the Highlanders will play the series finale tomorrow, with the first pitch slated for 1:00 PM at Louis Guisto Field.