IRVINE — UC Irvine senior Christian Bergman lowered his arm slot heading into Friday's Big West Conference series opener against visiting UC Santa Barbara.
But it was lowering the bar that Bergman was most concerned about.
Taking over for usual Friday night starter Danny Bibona, a senior All-American who has not lost a series opener against a conference opponent in 13 tries (12 wins and one no decision), Bergman made sure the Anteaters' opening act did not skip a beat.
Bergman provided 7 1/3 strong innings as the most noteworthy of four UCI pitchers who combined to blank the Gauchos, 4-0. The win marked the 14th straight time the Anteaters (31-16, 11-5 in conference) opened a conference series on a winning note. The last time UCI dropped a Big West series opener was against UCSB in May of 2008.