UCI Sweeps Doubleheader in Home Opener
On a day with weather that might have well been taken out of Seattle, the University of Washington Huskies traveled to Irvine to take on the UC Irvine Baseball team (4-1) in an early season doubleheader.
After Friday night’s game got rained out and rescheduled as part of Saturday’s doubleheader, the games were postponed two hours due to rain on Feb. 12.
But once the rain stopped and play started, the Anteaters had very little trouble picking up where they left off after taking two of three in Berkeley against Cal last weekend.
Anteater pitcher Chris Nicoll gave up only one run on four hits while striking out eight in his seven innings of work.
Nicoll earned his second win of the season against the Huskies, who are ranked eighth in the nation, their first games of the season at Anteater Ballpark.
In a game where Washington pitchers had a lot of control problems, it appeared as though their catcher, Matt Lane, had a hard time tracking the ball, shown on one wild pitch from Tim Lincecum in the fifth inning when he could not seem to find the ball against the backstop as Anteater right fielder Danny Miramontes scored from second, giving the Anteaters a lead which grew, as Nicoll allowed no hits during the second through seventh innings and the Anteaters continued to pile on the runs.
As the raucous crowd cheered UCI on, pitcher Blair Erickson came on in the top of the eighth and closed it out for his first save of the season, as the Anteaters took game one of the doubleheader, six to three.
As it got dark at Anteater Ballpark, so did the Anteaters’ jerseys, as they switched from white to blue in between games.
The Anteaters wasted absolutely no time in the second game as they belted out six runs in the first inning.
Led by third baseman Matt Anderson’s RBI double and a scored run on a balk by Washington pitcher Kyle Parker, the Anteaters then saw shortstop Chad Lundahl hit his first career home run.
It just so happened that the bases were loaded as the Anteater shortstop jacked it to the opposite field.
After the game, Lundahl said of his first grand slam, ‘It was awesome. It’s always a great feeling to put one out there like that and give some support for the pitcher.’
UCI went on to score one run in both the second and third, giving them a total of eight for the game. The Huskies scored three runs in the top of the sixth, but it was too little, too late. The Anteaters won the game eight to three, as senior pitcher Glenn Swanson picked up his first win of the season.
But UCI Head Coach Dave Serrano wasn’t completely satisfied, saying, ‘In the middle we gave some at-bats away.’
The Anteaters improved to 4-1 on the season with their only loss coming in extra innings against Cal.
The UCI team, beating the eighth-ranked Washington Huskies should definitely be looking to move up in the polls from their current position at 42nd. ‘Beating a number-eight team [twice], or beating an unranked team