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UCI dominance goes deep

College Baseball

Anteaters belt two homers, two triples and three doubles to sweep series and win fifth straight.

March 24, 2012|By Barry Faulkner
(Kevin Chang | Daily…)

IRVINE — The 17-5 nonconference victory that clinched the UC Irvine baseball team's first three-game series sweep of the season came with a little something extra against visiting Dartmouth on Saturday.

The Anteaters (14-8), who have won a season-best five straight, belted two home runs and added two triples and three doubles to pound the Big Green (2-10). UCI tied its season-best run output and reached double figures for only the second time in 2012.

Freshman catcher Jerry McClanahan cleared the left-field fence with a solo shot in the second inning and freshman right fielder Taylor Sparks capped an eight-run third inning with a two-run blast to left.

Freshman designated hitter Connor Spencer had a bases-loaded triple in that third-inning outburst and senior center fielder Christian Ramirez totaled three runs batted in with his triple and double.

"We had a little juice, definitely," Ramirez said of the power hitting that has been elusive for UCI this season. The two homers Saturday gave the 'Eaters four in four games, after managing just one in the first 18. "It's always good to get those extra-base hits to bring guys in. And it was everyone, not just one or two guys. We were all putting a little juice on our bats."

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UCI received hits from 11 players, including freshmen Tyler Krause and Justin Castro, who entered the game late to record their first collegiate hits.

Senior shortstop D.J. Crumlich was three for five and scored twice, while starting a double play with a diving stab of a ball to his right to help limit a three-run eighth inning for Dartmouth. Crumlich was eight for 12 and scored five times in the series.

Spencer and Ramirez were both two for three with three RBIs Saturday, while McClanahan finished two for five with two RBIs. McClanahan also picked a runner off first to help senior starting pitcher Crosby Slaught improve to 3-2.

Slaught, now 19-5 in his career, allowed seven hits and two earned runs while throwing 81 pitches in six innings. He struck out three and did not issue a walk.

"There were a lot of things to like today," said UCI Coach Mike Gillespie, who noted the three wins against left-handed starters represents a reversal of the norm this season.

"We've been horrible against lefties," Gillespie said. "I mean mysteriously unexplainably dominated."

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