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Dirtbags swept again as their season crumbles

The Dirtbags are unable to hold leads and suffered yet another series sweep over the weekend as a result. Long Beach lost three on the road against UC Davis.

With each loss, the Dirtbags inch closer to becoming mathematically eliminated from postseason contention.

Long Beach fell behind in the first inning for the fifth time in six games Friday. Despite sophomore third baseman Santino Rivera’s career-high three hits, the hole was too deep. The Dirtbags left nine men on base en route to a 6-4 loss.

Long Beach pummelled Davis starting pitcher Cooper Morrison Saturday. Freshman left fielder Chase Luttrell hit his first career home run in the fourth inning making the score 2-0.

Junior RHP Nick Avila dismantled the Davis lineup Saturday. He went a career-high seven and two-thirds innings, the longest outing by any Dirtbags’ pitcher this season. Avila left with runners at second and third with a 2-1 lead, creating a high-leverage situation for junior reliever Tyler Gums.

Gums induced a ground ball to senior second baseman Laine Huffman, who muffed the ball, allowing two runs to score giving Davis a 3-2 lead. The Dirtbags wasted a stellar pitching performance and lost 3-2.

Long Beach attacked the starting pitcher again on Sunday. Junior first baseman Jacob Hughey and junior right fielder Calvin Estrada each had three hits and the Dirtbags led 4-1 after the second inning.

Again, the offense failed to score against the bullpen. UC Davis tallied four runs in the sixth inning against junior starting LHP Zak Baayoun  and took a 5-4 lead.  

Estrada tied the game with a double in the seventh. The game went to extra innings tied 5-5.

The Dirtbags loaded the bases with one out in the top of the 10th but stranded all three runners, contributing to the inefficiency the Dirtbags have with runners in scoring position in conference games.

Luttrell continued his noteworthy series performance with a leadoff single in the 11th, but the Dirtbags could not drive him in.

Dirtbags junior RHP Dylan Spacke entered in the ninth and was effective for two innings. The closer is coached for short high-intensity outings but was asked to pitch three innings Sunday. Co-interim head coach Dan Ricabal called for two intentional walks in the 11th which loaded the bases. Spacke then issued another walk forcing in the winning run for Davis.

The Dirtbags begin a four-game homestand with a non-conference game against LMU 6 p.m. Tuesday.

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