Bruins' Rally Comes Up Short, Baseball Falls to Fresno State

Feb. 5, 2005

FRESNO, Calif. - UCLA had an early two-run lead but Fresno State's six-run fifth inning was too much for the Bruins, who dropped game two of this weekend's three-game series 8-4 Saturday afternoon at Beiden Field. UCLA (2-3) managed 11 hits but stranded 14 runners on base and fell short with the potential tying run on deck in the ninth inning.

Fresno State's David Gomez' three-run home run and Will Thomas' base-clearing, three-RBI double in the fifth inning highlighted the Diamond Dogs' (1-4) first win of the year.

Senior right-hander Bryan Beck started and lasted four innings on the mound en route to his second no-decision in as many starts. Freshman southpaw Brendan Lafferty suffered his first collegiate defeat for after surrendering Gomez' shot in the fifth.

UCLA's Eric Taylor continued his hot hitting with another 2-for-3 day at the plate and left-fielder Will Penniall cemented himself into the Bruins' leadoff spot with two more hits and two more runs scored.

Freshman Mike Metzger picked up the first two hits of his career, a single and a double, after he entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning.

UCLA scored in the first to take an early 1-0 lead when Taylor drove home Penniall with an RBI bunt single. Penniall had led off the game with a double to center field. In the top of the fifth UCLA took a 2-0 lead when Penniall again scored, this time on a Sean Smith RBI single to left.

In the ninth, down 8-2, the Bruins began to mount a come back against Bulldog reliever Jaime Arneson. After Arneson walked Smith and pinch-hitter Sean Carpenter to begin the inning, he struck out pinch-hitters Kevin Conlin and Brant Rustich before Anthony Norman plated Smith with an RBI single to left. Metzger notched his first career RBI with a double to left scoring Carpenter on the next play. Reliever Michael Cooper would then get shortstop Tommy Lansdon to fly out to left to end the game.

Bulldog reliever Rudy Quinonez (1-0) picked up the victory for Fresno State with 0.2 innings in relief of starter Brandon Miller.

UCLA and Fresno State conclude this weekend's three-game series on Sunday at 1 p.m at Beiden Field. The right-handed Rustich is scheduled to start for the Bruins while right-hander Matt Garza is slated to throw for the Bulldogs.

Game note: UCLA catcher Chris Denove left the game in the sixth inning and was replaced by Aaron Markel after being hit by a foultip off the bat of Fresno State's Will Thomas. Denove is expected to play Sunday.

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