LOS ANGELES — The UCSB baseball team’s (12-3) offense stayed white hot Monday night, hitting three home runs and scoring double digits for the third time in a week to defeat Loyola Marymount (7-8), 13-6, in Los Angeles.
Nick Oakley got the scoring started in the second inning with his first home run of the season, then Aaron Parker and Ivan Brethowr added long balls — the fifth for each of them — in the fourth and eighth innings.
While Tyler Bremner faced the minimum through his first three innings, the Gauchos got to work putting runs on the board. Jonah Sebring led off the top of the second inning by being hit by a pitch, giving Oakley a runner to drive home. The UCSB second baseman, who had ended the first inning by starting a double play on defense, gave a 3-1 pitch a ride over the centerfield wall for his first home run of the season.
The Gauchos added another two-run homer in the top of the fourth, this time off the bat of Parker. After Zander Darby doubled off the first pitch he saw, UCSB’s sophomore catcher drilled his fifth long ball of the year over LMU’s “blue monster” wall in left field to double the advantage.
Sebring made it a 5-0 game with an RBI single, then Oakley drove in his third run of the day with an RBI groundout before the inning ended. The Gauchos would need those extra runs in the bottom of the fourth, as Bremner gave up his first three hits of the night — a double, a triple and a single — for two LMU runs. To the freshman’s credit, Bremner responded by striking out the next three batters he faced, then pitched a perfect fifth inning.
Bremner’s night was done after five, and he departed with a 7-2 lead thanks to Parker’s fifth-inning RBI single. Alex Schrier stepped in in relief, only to give up three runs in the sixth due to some bad luck. After back-to-back singles, Schrier induced a possible double-play ball, only for an error to turn outs into a run for LMU. An RBI groundout and a sacrifice fly brought the Lions within two before the frame was done. Sebring stretched UCSB’s lead back to four in the top of the seventh with a two-RBI triple, but LMU got one back in the bottom half of the inning.
Up only three and having been out-scored, 4-2, since their starter departed, the Gauchos were looking for insurance runs in the eighth inning, and they got them in a big way.
One-out singles from LeTrey McCollum and Corey Nunez put runners on for Brethowr, who mashed a no-doubt home run to left field to break the game back open. Darby followed that up by hitting a double and promptly stealing third, then Parker drove him home with a single for UCSB’s 13th run of the game.
Elliot Gallegos made his first appearance of the season in the bottom of the ninth, pitching a perfect inning to but the game to bed.
The Gauchos were as disciplined as they were powerful at the plate Monday night, walking more times — a season-high 11 — than they struck out.
Tyler Bremner faced the minimum in four of his five innings of work in Los Angeles, finishing with a line of 5.0 innings pitched, two earned runs on three hits and one walk, and seven strikeouts.
Six Gauchos had multi-hit nights on Monday. Aaron Parker led the team in hits (3) and RBI (4).
UCSB will return home to begin Big West play this weekend, hosting Cal State Bakersfield for a three-game series at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium, March 17-19. First pitch times are set for 5:05 p.m. Friday, 4:05 p.m. Saturday and 1:05 p.m. Sunday. Children ages 12 and under receive free admission to all Saturday and Sunday home games this baseball season. For fans who cannot make it to the ballpark, the games will be live on ESPN+, with an audio-only broadcast and live stats available through ucsbgauchos.com.
Eric Boose is assistant director of athletic communications at UCSB.