SAN DIEGO, Calif. --- UC Irvine was a step behind Friday against Oregon as the teams walloped five home runs at Fowler Park in a 11-5 Oregon victory in the Tony Gwynn Classic.
The 'Eaters (3-2) kicked it off in usual fashion with a massive two-run shot from Keston Hiura in the first inning. Adam Alcantara added a third run scoring after doubling and extending his hit streak to 21 games.
Oregon (3-2) struck back with two home runs in the fourth on homers from Tim Susnara and Spencer Steer to tie it up at 3-3.
The Ducks took the lead the following inning getting a pair home, and a third run scored a split second before Alcantara was able to double up a runner at second base following an amazing diving catch in the right field corner.
The offense responded in the bottom half of the inning on a kooky first career home run off the bat of Mikey Duarte. His missile clipped the top of the left field fence, and a leaping A.J. Balta tried to snag it, but instead knocked it back off the top of the wall and over the fence cutting the deficit to 6-5.
The Ducks stepped on the pedal knocking around every Anteater pitcher on the afternoon putting four runs up in the seventh punctuated by a Daniel Patzlaff home run to guide Oregon to the 11-5 victory.
Andre Pallante had a better outing than his collegiate debut, but struggled to get out of the fourth inning allowing three earned runs and three walks while not factoring in the decision. Chris Vargas would collect the loss allowing three runs in 1.1 innings of work.
David Peterson settled in after a rocky first inning to throw six innings and claim a victory. James Acuna and Connor Zwetsch closed it out with three innings of scoreless relief.
Hiura's home run was his third of the season, and he's now up to 12 RBI. Duarte matched him on his first career home run. Cole Kreuter snagged an RBI as the 'Eaters managed just five hits in all.
UCI and Oregon draw even with 3-2 records on the year now, and the Anteaters will finish up the Tony Gwynn Classic Saturday with two games; first against host USD at 10:00 a.m., and finished off with a 2:00 p.m. game against Tennessee with both games being played at Fowler Park.