Stanford's Seven-Game Win Streak Snapped With 8-1 Loss At UCLA

May 19, 2006

Los Angeles, Calif. - UCLA (29-21, 11-8 Pac-10) snapped a season-high seven-game win streak for Stanford (28-22, 10-12 Pac-10) with an 8-1 victory over the Cardinal in the opener of a crucial three-game Pac-10 series on a cool and cloudy Friday evening at Jackie Robinson Stadium. The Bruins jumped out to a 6-0 lead after the first three innings to support winning pitcher Hector Ambriz (7-6), who gave up just one run while scattering eight hits and striking out eight without walking a batter over 8.0 frames. Ambriz also doubled and contributed a pair of RBI at the plate.

Sean Smith (3-3, 2 2B, HR, 2 RBI) and Ryan Babineau (3-4, HR, 3 RBI) both homered to lead the Bruins' offense, while Jermaine Curtis (2-4, 3B, RBI) and Brandon Crawford (2-5, 3B) each had a pair of hits including first inning triples that set the tone for the contest.

Chris Minaker (3-4, RBI) and Grant Escue (2-4) had multiple-hit games for the Cardinal with Minaker extending his hit streak to seven in a row. Jason Castro extended his career-high hit streak to eight games with a fifth inning single, while Michael Taylor was held hitless to end his career-high hit streak at nine.

UCLA put three runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning to take an early 3-0 lead. Crawford and Curtis started the Bruins' half of the first with back-to-back triples to right field for the first UCLA run. Jensen was then hit by a pitch but made the first out when he tried to advance on a Reynolds' pitch in the dirt. Ambriz then slugged a double to right center to bring in Curtis and Cardinal centerfielder Ryan Seawell dropped a fly ball hit by Brett McMillan to put Bruins on first and third with just one out. Smith then brought home Ambriz with a sacrifice fly to make it 3-0 and Dunlap singled to keep the rally going before Reynolds finally retired Roenicke to end the inning.

The Bruins added another run in the bottom of the second to increase their lead to 4-0. Babineau and Crawford started the rally with back-to-back singles, before a sacrifice bunt from Curtis moved the runners to second and third. Reynolds then intentionally walked Jensen before a sacrifice fly by Ambriz plated Babineau.

Babeineau got UCLA two more runs in the third when he blasted a two-out, two-run homer over the left field wall to put the Bruins ahead, 6-0. Smith had started the inning with a double but Reynolds picked up two outs on a pair of fielders' choice before Babeineau's shot over the left field wall.UCLA picked up another run in the fifth to go ahead 7-0 when Babineau's routine two-out ground ball turned into a bad-hop single when it bounced over the head of Minaker at shortstop to score Roenicke, who had reached on a fielders' choice earlier in the inning that began with Smith's second leadoff double in as many at bats.

Stanford scored its first run of the game in the sixth when Seawell led off with a double, before Escue and Minaker followed with back-to-back singles. But Ambriz avoided a bigger Cardinal inning when he took things into his own hands by fielding a foul pop-up by Michael Taylor, before striking out Randy Molina and Chris Lewis to leave Escue stranded at third and Minaker at first.

Stanford and UCLA continue the series Saturday (2 pm, PT) and Sunday (1 pm, PT). UCLA is scheduled to pitch LHP Dave Huff (6-2, 2.77) on Saturday and RHP Tyson Brummett (6-6, 4.43) on Sunday, while the Cardinal has not yet announced a probable starting pitcher for either contest.

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