IRVINE, Calif. --- UC Irvine and Cal Poly took it down to the wire once again, and the Mustangs found the final run prevailing, 6-5, Sunday afternoon in Anteater Ballpark to take the game and series.
Calvin Faucher came on for the ninth inning in a tie game, and allowed four hits to the Mustangs of Cal Poly (10-17, 2-1) with the go-ahead run coming off the bat of Kyle Marinconz, one of his three hits and RBI on the day.
For Faucher, he earned every decision in the series winning once and losing twice. He, along with four other relievers, could not hold the 3-0 lead UCI (12-12, 1-2) was staked out to from a three-run third inning.
Adam Alcantara earned an RBI on a bases loaded walk of the first run, and a soft roller inside the bag at first base from Parker Coss found a way into the outfield to drive home the other two and put UCI up, 3-0, after three.
Cal Poly chipped away starting with two runs in the fifth by Michael Sanderson. A two-out looping liner into right field was just barely trapped by the diving Alcantara cutting the Anteater lead to 3-2.
CP charged into the lead in the seventh with a clutch two-out, two-run double from Marinconz topped off by an RBI single to right from Colby Barrick building a 5-3 Mustang lead.
The 'Eaters bounced back in the next two innings as Parker Coss reemerged with a two-out RBI single, and Mikey Duarte fisted his own two-out RBI single into right field to tie things at 5-5 in the eighth. Each finished the day with three hits, and Coss put up a career high three RBI in the loss.
The Anteater staff had a few career high as well from redshirt freshman Ryan Johnston who performed well in his longest outing of three innings and 57 pitches despite allowing five hits and three runs. Kaz Akamatsu held the Mustangs in check in the eighth striking out a pair for a career high.
The deflating loss drops UCI to even on the season at 12-12, and sets it back early in conference season at 1-2. The 'Eaters play a final home game, Tuesday, April 4 at 6:30 p.m. against Bakersfield, before setting out for eight straight on the road and five straight non-conference matchups.
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