June 12, 2010
Scores, Schedules & Capsules
Bruins best Titans in
contest worthy of Disneyland
By Ryan Eshoff
Special to CollegeBaseballInsider.com
Ryan Eshoff is a rising junior at UCLA, a native
of San Jose, and has seen more of California than is
recommended. He has been on the sports staff of the Daily Bruin
newspaper his entire UCLA career, spending the last year as an
assistant sports editor and preparing to become a senior writer.
He has covered the entire breadth of Bruin sports and considers
himself, for better or worse, the world's foremost expert on
UCLA water polo. In his less than copious amounts of free time,
Ryan fights the East Coast bias and roots rabidly for the San
Jose Sharks, the San Francisco 49ers and the Los Angeles Dodgers
while wishing there was an NBA franchise in the Bay Area.
There are emotional roller-coasters, and then
there are gravity-defying, height-requirement,
probably-shouldn't-eat-before-you-ride emotional roller
In Game 2 of their Super Regional series on Saturday, UCLA
avoided elimination by knocking off Cal State Fullerton 11-7 in
a wild and electric game that took 10 innings to complete.
In the top of the tenth, the Bruins - playing as the visitors -
got a two-out, two-run single from seldom-used Trevor Brown
before a dropped fly ball by the Titans allowed two more runs to
"I was fortunate enough to get a good pitch and was lucky enough
to get a good swing on it," Brown said. "The opportunity to help
your team is awesome."
But what transpired in the tenth was nothing compared to the
drama of the previous inning. With UCLA down to its final out
against Titans reliever Raymond Hernandez, senior Blair Dunlap
coaxed a walk and sophomore Tyler Rahmatulla cranked a 3-1
fastball for a two-run homer to give the Bruins a 7-6 lead.
"I take a lot of pride in making someone do something special,"
Fullerton coach Dave Serrano said of the pitch to Rahmatulla.
"He did it. He did what good hitters do when they have count
"It didn't feel like we were down to the last out," UCLA coach
John Savage said. "We've come back in many games. There just
seemed to be a lot of belief from our dugout in Tyler coming
The jubilation in the UCLA dugout wouldn't last long, however.
The Titans tied things up in the bottom of the ninth behind
their two MLB first-round draft picks, Gary Brown and Christian
Colon. The pair pulled off a double steal of second and third,
and a UCLA error on the throw to third allowed Brown to score
and Colon to move over to third. But Bruins closer Dan Klein
retired the final two batters to strand him and send the game to
It was stand-up, sit-down for the rival fans, as each side took
turns thinking they had just pulled out the victory.
"Championship atmosphere, and lots of perseverance from our
club," Savage said. "Seemed like the game was over multiple
times on both sides. Just a hell of a baseball game."
Throughout most of the game, the only thing hellish for Savage
was UCLA's execution in the clutch. The Bruins left a number of
men in scoring position and squandered a number of prime
opportunities. Still, they got two solo home runs from Cody
Regis and one from Justin Uribe and had a 4-2 lead heading into
the bottom of the seventh.
Apparently a good stretch and the playing of "Take Me Out to the
Ballgame" was just what the Titans needed to figure out UCLA
starter Trevor Bauer. They struck for four runs to take a 6-4
lead that their bullpen wouldn't be able to hold.
"There's no excuses," Serrano said. "We should be more quality
throughout the pitching staff to be able to get those stops."
The victory helps UCLA avoid elimination and sets up a Sunday
rubber match between the two teams. The Bruins will start Rob
Rasmussen, who won the finale of last weekend's Los Angeles
regional, while the Titans will counter with Dylan Floro.
"We were lucky enough to come out on top," Savage said. "We live
another day, and tomorrow is going to be another championship