Box Score 1 | Box Score 2
ORLANDO, Fla. – The No. 17 UCF baseball team split a pair of games on Saturday's double header, losing the first game 4-2 but bouncing back with a decisive 10-5 victory in game two. With the victory, the Knights pick up their 10th win of the season, the quickest team to do so in the American Athletic Conference this season.
In game one of the doubleheader, the Knights found themselves in an early 2-0 deficit through the fourth inning while struggling to put any runners on base in that time.
Pablo Ruiz broke into the hit column for the Black and Gold in the fifth with a single to left field. Ruiz came around to score two batters later, on a Matt Archer groundball out.
CSUN doubled their score in the seventh to make it a 4-1 ballgame, capitalizing on a throwing error from the Knights outfield. Ben McCabe would hit his first homer of the year in the bottom of the seventh, but that wasn't enough to mount a comeback for UCF.
Winning Pitcher: Blaine Traxel (2-0)
Losing Pitcher: Trevor Holloway (2-1)
Top Pitchers: Trevor Holloway (6.0 IP, 9 K, 2 ER), Zack Hunsicker (2.0 IP, 2 K, 1 ER)
Top Hitters: Ben McCabe (1-2, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 R)
- The Knights five hits in the first game is the second fewest on the season
- Trevor Holloway's 27 strikeouts on the season is the most of any UCF pitcher.
- Holloway came into the weekend among the top five in the American Athletic Conference in total strikeouts.
Needing to quickly bounce back from game one, the Knights battled in a back and forth contest for the first five innings in the second contest.
Jordan Rathbone got the bats going with a double in the second inning and would later come around to score. The Matadors hit starting pitcher Hunter Patteson early in the contest, putting up three two-out runs in the third inning. The Black and Gold answered with two runs of their own in the bottom half of the third off the bats of Tom Josten and Jordan Rathbone.
The UCF bats exploded for four runs in the sixth inning after four straight hits pushed the CSUN starting pitcher out of the game. Matt Archer tallied his sixth RBI of the year on a bases loaded single, followed by a Gephry Pena walk, and two runs were allowed to cross thanks to some help from wild pitches.
Jaylyn Whitehead entered the game from the bullpen in the seventh and held the Matadors hitless for the remainder of the game, picking up the 3.0 inning save and sealing the victory for the Knights.
Winning Pitcher: Jack Sinclair (2-0)
Losing Pitcher: Jayson Newman (0-1)
Top Pitchers: Jack Sinclair (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 ER), Jaylyn Whitehead (3.0 IP, 0 H, 1 SV)
Top Hitters: Matt Archer (2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI), Tom Josten (1-4, 1 RBI) Connor Allen (1-1, 2 RBI)
- Jaylyn Whitehead's three-inning save was his first save of the season
- Of UCF starting position players, Jordan Rathbone carries the best slugging percentage, which improved to .630 after today's contests.
- The Knights have now won 10 games on the season, making them the first team in the American Athletic Conference to reach 10 victories.
- When the Black and Gold score six runs or more, they are 8-0. When scoring five runs or less, the Knights hold a 2-2 record.
- UCF leads the all-time series against CSUN at 2-1.
The Knights return to John Euliano Park to close out the series with CSUN on Sunday, Mar. 1 at 12 p.m. The conclusion of the series can be streamed on twitch.tv/ucfknightstv1.
DON'T MISS OUT
The UCF baseball team is in its fourth season under head coach Greg Lovelady and will welcome seven teams from the 2019 NCAA Tournament to John Euliano Park in 2020. Click here or call (407) 823-1000 for ticket information.
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