Sunday, 13 March 2016 14:42

UCLA Baseball Wins Walk-Off Style

Written by  Official UCLA Press Release

UCLA Baseball Walk OffLOS ANGELES – Kort Peterson’s walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth lifted No. 14 UCLA to a, 5-4, win over the Texas Longhorns on Saturday afternoon at Jackie Robinson Stadium.

Heading to the bottom of the ninth, the Bruins and Longhorns were locked in a 4-4 tie. Peterson, leading off the frame, took the 1-0 pitch from Blake Wellmann and launched it onto the roof of the Jack and Rhodine Gifford Hitting Facility in right field to supply the Bruins with the walk-off victory.

In total UCLA racked up eight hits, led by Peterson (2-for-3, HR, R, 3 RBI) who drove in a team-high three runs. Also finishing with multi-hit afternoons were Eric Filia (2-for-4, 2 R) and Luke Persico (2-for-4, RBI).

Brian Gadsby (1-0) supplied a gutsy effort to earn the win, pitching 1.2 innings, allowing one run on two hits while striking out three. Wellmann (0-1) earned the loss for Texas, allowing the game-winning home run to the only batter he faced.

UCLA (7-7) plated a pair in the first inning to take the early lead over the Longhorns. Daniel Amaral and Filia paired up for back-to-back singles with one out to get the Bruins going. Persico followed with a single to score Amaral and then Peterson brought Filia home on a sac-fly to give UCLA the 2-0 first inning advantage.

The Bruins used a two-out rally in the third to add another run to their total. With two away, Filia reached on an error by the pitcher and Persico followed with a single to put two on for Peterson. The UCLA designated hitter then roped a single up the middle to plate Filia from second and give the Bruins a three-run edge.

Texas (7-8) didn’t get on the board until the sixth where they would pull within one of the Bruins. With two outs, Tres Barrera delivered an RBI-double and Kacy Clemens followed with an RBI-single to cut the UCLA lead to 3-2.

Then in the eighth, the Longhorns knotted the game at three with a solo home run off of the bat of Travis Jones.

In the bottom half of the eighth, the Bruins regained the lead in an unconventional manner. With runners on the corners and two outs, UCLA executed a double-steal with Filia getting caught in a run-down between first and second long enough for Urabe to score the go-ahead run from third.

The Longhorns battled back though and once again tied the game in the top of the ninth. Texas began the inning with a double, followed by a walk, followed by another double to bring in the tying run. However, after that, Gadsby shut the door, stranding runners on second and third by striking out two of the next three batters.

That would set the stage for Peterson’s walk-off home run that gave the Bruins the 5-4 series evening victory.

The final game of the series will be tomorrow at 12:00pm PT at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Tickets can be purchased by visiting uclabruins.com/tickets or by calling 310-UCLA-WIN. Fans can also listen to all of the action live on uclabruins.com.

Notes: Eric Filia has reached base in all 14 games this season…Kort Peterson now has home runs in consecutive games…Peterson’s three RBI tie a career-high…Daniel Amaral made his first career start and recorded his first career hit…Jake Bird set a new career-high with 5.2 innings pitched…The win marks Coach Savage’s first win over Texas as a head coach…This was UCLA’s second walk-off win this season.

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