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UCLA Foiled by First-Inning Rally in 7-3 Loss to UC Irvine

Feb 27, 2021
Matt McLain (photo: Jesus Ramirez)

IRVINE, Calif. – UC Irvine scored four runs in the bottom of the first and never looked back in a 7-3 victory over No. 8 UCLA on Saturday afternoon at Anteater Ballpark.

The decision evened the series between the Bruins (3-3) and Anteaters (4-1), which began Friday at Jackie Robinson Stadium with a 4-3, walk-off win in UCLA's favor.

The Bruins were limited to five hits in the contest, highlighted by doubles from junior catcher Noah Cardenas and sophomore right fielder Michael Curialle, and a pair of singles from junior center fielder Kevin Kendall. Junior first baseman Jack Filby – who drew a bases-loaded walk to win Friday's game – reached base three times via the base on balls on Saturday.

The UCLA bullpen combined to throw five scoreless innings of relief in the contest. Sophomore lefty Jake Saum had the longest outing of the five Bruin relievers to enter the contest, striking out a pair over a two-inning effort.

UCI posted four unearned runs during their first offensive half-inning to go ahead for good. The Anteaters made the Bruins pay for two walks and in error in the opening frame, with Justin Torres knocking in two runs with a double to right and another pair coming in on a Jacob Castro RBI single.

The Anteaters would extend the lead to 7-0 in the third inning, stringing together four singles over five at-bats to bring in three runs.

Michael Frias picked up the win for UCI with 2 2/3 innings of hit-free relief. He struck out five. Jesse Bergin received the loss for UCLA, allowing three earned runs in three innings. He picked up five Ks in the contest, striking out the side in the second inning.

UCLA and UC Irvine will conclude the series with a Sunday rubber match at Jackie Robinson Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. PT. The contest will be streamed live on