SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento State baseball team scored five unearned runs on six UC Riverside errors and the Hornets split a four-game series with the Highlanders with a 7-4 win on Sunday afternoon at John Smith Field.
The Hornets (3-4) tallied seven runs on six hits with two errors while the Highlanders (3-5) posted four runs on seven hits with six errors. UC Riverside had five errors in the second game yesterday and 12 total in the four game series.
Sacramento State freshman Sutter McLoughlin (1-0) earned his first career win after tossing 2.2 innings of one-run relief. The Rio Americano HS graduate allowed just one run on two hits with a walk and two strikeouts. The Hornets' starting pitcher, Zach Morgan, gave up three runs on five hits in 6.1 innings with three walks and three strikeouts. UC Riverside reliever Donovan Gonzalez (0-1) earned the loss after giving up three runs (all unearned) in 0.2 innings with two walks.
Sacramento State did all its damage late, with three runs in the sixth, three more in the seventh and one in the eighth.
In the sixth inning, freshman Nathan Lukes led off with a single up the middle and advanced to third after Will Soto singled and the center fielder made an error on the play. Rhys Hoskins took a seven-pitch walk to load the bases with one out before David Del Grande smacked a single to left to score two runs. A wild pitch moved Hoskins to third and Del Grande to second which allowed Hoskins to score on Justin Higley's RBI ground out to second.
It was tied up, 3-3, heading to the seventh inning where the Hornets pulled ahead on some sloppy play by the Highlanders. The Hornets scored all three of their runs in the seventh with two outs and without getting a hit.
After UC Riverside reliever Donovan Gonzalez got the first two hitters out, he issued a walk to Lukes. He then moved all the way to third after the catcher sailed a throw on his stolen base attempt. In the same at-bat, Chris Lewis reached on a fielding error by the shortstop which allowed Lukes to score the first run of the inning for the Hornets. Up next, Will Soto drew a walk before Hoskins reached on another fielding error by the shortstop, which brought Lewis home from second and pushed Soto to third. Soto scored when Del Grande reached on a throwing error by the pitcher. All told, the Hornets scored three runs on no hits and four errors in the seventh inning.
The Hornets tacked on another run in the eighth inning after Dane Fujinaka scored on a Scott Loper single after he reached on a fielding error by the shortstop. Alex Rubanowitz, the UC Riverside shortstop, had three of the Highlanders' six errors.
Sacramento State saw six different players each record a hit. Lukes and Soto scored two runs apiece while Del Grande had a team-high two RBIs.
Designated hitter Kyle Boudreau had two hits for the Highlanders, including a solo home run in the ninth inning and a triple in the third.
Sacramento State will continue its eight-game homestand with a mid-week contest against former Western Athletic Conference foe Nevada at 2 p.m. on Tuesday. Utah Valley visits next weekend for a three-game set.