UC SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The Gauchos bullpen and defense were shaky in the season opener and #8 UCSB lost at home to Santa Clara 8-4.
Trailing 3-2 in the top of the fifth inning Santa Clara scored three runs without hitting the baseball as Gauchos relievers Connor Dand and Connor Roberts each walked in a run plus the Broncos scored on a wild pitch.
In the top of sixth inning Santa Clara scored three unearned runs.
Following an error, Mike Bowles slugged a 3-run home run to put the Broncos up 8-3.
The Gauchos grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning on back-to-back RBI doubles by McClain O'Connor and Jordan Sprinkle.
But in the top of the fourth the Broncos tied it with a two-run home run by Austin Reyes off of Zach Torra.
The Santa Ynez High School graduate Torra pitched 3.2 innings allowing 2 runs while striking out 5.
Dand took the loss for UCSB.
O'Connor was 2-for-3 for UCSB with 3 RBI.