Hornets swept by UC Riverside

AJ Taylor

Sacramento State baseball dropped all three games in a weekend series against UC Riverside.

Sunday’s 4-3 loss dropped the Hornets to 2-5 and was their fourth straight defeat.

“You’re disappointed that you lost three times, but we played 11 good innings the first (game). We played five really good innings the second game, and I think we played nine good innings today,” head coach Reggie Christiansen said.

“Hopefully this is something we can learn from and move forward. They’re a very good baseball team. They’re a lot more mature. We’re a young team and we need to learn from our mistakes and move on.”

Redshirt-freshman David Del Grande hit his first home run of the season on Sunday, a two-run shot to left field in the seventh.

“(Del Grande) has been working his butt off all fall,” relief pitcher James Chamberlin said.

“He’s been improving and improving, and so have our freshman. You can tell by their swings. It’s going to come around.”

The Hornets started the series with a double-header on Saturday after rain postponed Friday’s contest.

The first game was a 2-0 extra-innings loss, which marked Sac State’s third straight extra-innings game.

Freshman Tanner Mendonca started the first game of the series and pitched seven scoreless innings. He allowed four hits while walking two and striking out four.

Reliever Andrew Galvan took the mound in the eighth inning and went three scoreless innings until the 11th when the Highlanders plated two, which secured the victory for UC Riverside.

“I thought about sending (Mendonca) back out there for the eighth inning,” Christiansen said, “but it’s just too early in the season.”

“It was a cold day and he’d done his job. I feel real comfortable with Galvan out of the bullpen, but Tanner has thrown well two weeks in a row.”

The second game of the series remained tied until the sixth inning when the Highlanders capped off an eight-run inning with a grand slam to left-center field.

UC Riverside finished the game with 24 hits.

“We’re right there in every game. We’ve lost five games now and three by one run. We could be 5-2 instead of 2-5,” pitcher Dallas Chadwick said.

Sac State returns to action on Tuesday when it hostsUC Davis at 2 p.m.

AJ Taylor can be reached at [email protected]