VANCOUVER - After narrowly pulling off a rain-soaked game one win on Saturday, the UBC Thunderbirds took advantage of a sunny Sunday to sweep through their tripleheader of seven-inning games against the Oregon Tech Hustlin' Owls by scores of 9-0, 2-1 and 5-1 at Thunderbird Park.
UBC won two, one run games to win the series 4-0, improving to 18-5 overall and 10-2 in the NAIA West league. That puts them in first place, one game up on Lewis-Clark State. The T-Birds also extend their win streak to 12 overall and 10 conference games. Oregon Tech falls to 4-8 in NAIA West play and 9-21 on the season.
Oregon Tech will play at Central Washington on Monday and Tuesday before returning home to host perennial powerhouse Lewis-Clark State for a 4-game series beginning Thursday at 1:00 pm at Kiger Stadium.
Conor Lillis-White got the start in game one of the tripleheader, and the Toronto native went the distance in the seven-inning affair, taking a perfect game into the sixth inning before a single by Alex Antonaras broke it up. He finished just one batter over the minimum, with 10 strikeouts and one hit allowed to move to 4-0 on the year. He also had just one walk after having some command issues in his last couple starts.
Game two saw a quality start from Jeremy Newton turn into a no-decision, as he left in the fifth inning, allowing no earned runs and five hits, with four strikeouts. He had a 1-0 lead heading into the fifth, but after Curtis Taylor inherited one of Newton's runners on third base, a passed ball allowed the tying run to score.
Meanwhile the T-Birds had only just broken up a no-hitter for Oregon Tech's Darian Benanua in the fifth inning, eventually leading to that lone run. But they managed to chase him from the game with two straight singles in the sixth, setting up a first-and-third with one out situation.
Jerod Bartnik stole second, and Kevin Biro took off for home on the throw, but the throw back to home beat him for the second out of the inning. Matt Spillman then smacked a single into right centre field which scored Bartnik as the winning run.
Taylor shut the Owls down over the last two innings to get the win, allowing one hit and striking out one.
And the strong pitching continued for UBC in game three, as Bryan Pawlina gave them four scoreless innings to start, followed by two scoreless innings from Alex Webb, who gets credit for the win. Matt Thornton gave up a run on one hit and one walk in the seventh to round out the day for the 'Birds.
Bruce Yari got things started in the first inning for the T-Birds by driving a double into the left field corner for two RBIs. He was brought home by a Tyler Enns single. And another Yari double in the third inning set up another scoring opportunity for Enns, as he tripled into the same corner in left for two more RBIs.
Yari finished the game 3-for-3 and was 5-for-9 in the series with four walks and four RBIs. He also flashed some serious extra-base potential with two doubles and a triple.
Biro continued his hitting rampage with a 5-for-12 series with two walks and an RBI. Spillman was 4-for-9 with three walks and an RBI. Cam Firth did a nice job filling in at catcher for the injured Brody Hawkins, going 4-for-7 with four RBIs.