Credit: Mia-Isobel Craig | Mustang News, 2023

Cal Poly Baseball lost all three games during their weekend trip to UC Berkeley for the Cal Baseball Classic against Cal and the University of Connecticut on Friday, Feb. 24 and Saturday, Feb. 25 at Stu Gordon Stadium.

The Mustangs (2-4) gave up 19 runs across three games against the Golden Bears (6-1) and the Huskies (3-3).

Friday vs Cal

The opening game of a three-game slate ended in a pitcher’s duel, with Cal Poly falling to Cal by a score of 2-1.

The teams started off trading scoreless frames with only seven base runners between the two teams throughout the first five innings.

In the top of the sixth, Cal Poly managed a runner on second thanks to singles by junior first baseman Joe Yorke and senior left fielder Collin Villegas with only one out, but they could not push the run across and stranded both runners.

In the bottom of the sixth, a two-out walk turned into trouble after an error by Yorke allowed him to advance to third. A single then brought in the first run for the Golden Bears to give them a 1-0 lead.

Cal Poly refused to let that deter them, as in the top of the seventh after Cal pulled their starter, the Mustangs rallied with redshirt sophomore second baseman Kemet Brown reaching second on an error, and subsequently scoring on a single by sophomore catcher Ryan Stafford.

Junior starter Bryce Warrecker was then lifted, having thrown six innings allowing three hits and two walks. Junior righthander Derek True entered and pitched a clean 7th inning for the Mustangs.

After Cal Poly went down 1-2-3 in the top half of the eighth, Cal led off the bottom half with a first-pitch, go-ahead home run to jump back ahead, 2-1.

In the top of the ninth, the Mustangs went down 1-2-3 as the Golden Bears picked up the win.

True (0-1) took the loss after giving up the home run in two innings of relief.

Friday vs UConn

The second game of the day for the Mustangs was against the University of Connecticut, and the Huskies came out on top 11-10 in a 10-inning affair.

With Cal Poly being the designated home team, graduate starting pitcher Travis Weston sat UConn down 1-2-3 before Yorke singled in Stafford in the bottom half of the frame to give the Mustangs a 1-0 lead.

Another clean frame from Weston sent the Cal Poly offense out again to do damage. With runners on second and third, freshman third baseman Tate Shimao singled up the middle and scored both runners to push the advantage to 3-0.

The Huskies turned around and hit a solo home run to get a run back in the third, and Cal Poly went down 1-2-3.

After a scoreless fourth, UConn went back-to-back with home runs in the fifth to draw even at three apiece. 

The Mustangs weren’t outdone however, as Stafford led off the frame with his own solo home run, and after a Yorke single, Villegas went deep to right field to give Cal Poly a three-run lead at 6-3.

The bottom of the sixth brought runs again for Cal Poly, as freshman center fielder Wyatt King smashed a solo home run to make it 7-3 Mustangs.

In the top of the seventh, Weston was relieved by junior righty Evan Tomlinson. The Huskies managed a two-run home run and back-to-back singles off of Tomlinson, who was relieved by junior righthander Kyle Scott, who escaped the inning.

Cal Poly then answered with an RBI walk from Stafford in the bottom of the seventh to bring the lead to 8-5.

The top of the eighth saw redshirt freshman right fielder Tanner Sagouspe come in from the field to relieve. After a two-out walk loaded the bases, UConn singled in two runs before Sagouspe struck out the next batter to end the inning.

Cal Poly once again responded however, as junior right fielder Trevor Tishenkel doubled in two runs to put the Mustangs up 10-7.

The top of the ninth was an eventful one, as a UConn lead-off home run quickly cut the lead to two. Then, after a hit by pitch and single, a double drove in one and made the score 10-9. 

With runners on second and third, the Huskies pushed the tying run ahead on an RBI groundout before Sagouspe got out of the inning.

A 1-2-3 inning from Cal Poly in the bottom half gave UConn a chance to strike first in extra innings. After back-to-back walks, back-to-back wild pitches pushed a run across for the Huskies.

Cal Poly had the heart of the lineup up for the bottom of the tenth, but they went down 1-2-3 and fell to UConn, 11-10.

Sagouspe (0-1) took the loss after giving up six runs in three innings of relief.

Saturday vs Cal

The final game of the weekend ended in a 7-3 victory for Cal over the Mustangs.

The Golden Bears and Cal Poly traded clean frames in the first inning, but a two-run homer in the bottom of the second gave Cal the 2-0 lead.

The Mustang offense was stagnant, not scoring a run for the first seven innings of the matchup.

After scoreless third and fourth innings, the Golden Bears launched a three-run home run in the fifth to push the lead to 5-0.

Cal piled it on in the bottom of the sixth after redshirt junior starter Ryan Baum was chased for sophomore reliever Steven Brooks. Two doubles by Cal plated two additional runs to make it a 7-0 game.

A scoreless seventh by junior reliever Kaden Sheedy gave the Cal Poly offense some momentum as after redshirt second baseman Ryan Fenn was hit by a pitch, Stafford blasted a two-run home run to cut into the lead at 7-2.

Another scoreless frame by freshman reliever Freddy Rodriguez in the eighth kept the score at 7-2. Villegas hit a solo home run, but it was too little, too late, as the Mustangs could not complete the comeback and lost 7-3.

Baum (1-1) took the loss after giving up six runs in 5 ⅓ innings.

Cal Poly will look to get back on track with a four-game set against the Oregon State Beavers at Baggett Stadium from Thursday, Mar. 2 to Sunday, Mar. 5.