Bergin, Cardenas Lead UCLA in Shutout Win at ASU
PHOENIX, Ariz. – Behind seven scoreless innings from junior right-hander Jesse Bergin and a pair of solo home runs from junior catcher Noah Cardenas, the UCLA baseball team recorded a 3-0 win over No. 21 Arizona State in Saturday's regular season finale at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.
The shutout clinched a series sweep for the Bruins (35-18, 18-12 Pac-12). It was the team's second sweep of the season, and first on the road. ASU dropped to 32-20, 16-14.
Bergin turned in one of his finest starts in a Bruin uniform to lead the win, allowing just four hits while completing a career-high seven innings.
He faced the minimum up until a two-out double in the sixth inning, with fine defensive plays by UCLA wiping out the only two hits he had allowed to that point in the game. In the second, freshman center fielder JonJon Vaughns recovered after narrowly missing a diving catch in shallow center field to throw out the runner trying to take second. An inning later, Bergin rolled up a tailor-made 4-6-3 double play to wipe out a leadoff single.
Other than that, Bergin rarely faced danger. He retired the side in order in three of his seven frames, and stranded runners at second after two-out doubles in both the sixth and seventh.
Right-handed relievers Michael Townsend and Max Rajcic seamlessly carried the baton the rest of the way, posting 1-2-3 innings of work to complete the shutout. Rajcic fanned a pair in his inning, including a game-ending strikeout of Joe Lampe.
The Bruins got all the offense they would need on two swings of the bat from Cardenas, who recorded his first-career multi-home run game on Saturday.
Both his blasts went over the left field wall against Sun Devils' starter Jared Glenn. He first went yard on a 2-2 offering from Glenn in the third, then hammered a 1-0 pitch even further out of the park in his next at-bat in the fifth inning.
UCLA added an insurance run in the ninth, as Matt McLain led off with a single and later scored when Kyle Karros bounced a base hit back up the middle.
The blanking was UCLA's fourth of the season, and it also represented the first time that the Sun Devils had been shut out in 2021 (last: Feb. 15, 2020). The win clinched a fourth place finish in the Pac-12 for UCLA.
The Bruins will learn their postseason fate during the 2021 NCAA college baseball tournament selection show on Monday, May 31 at 9:00 a.m. PT. The show will be televised live on ESPN2 and can be streamed on WatchESPN.