UCLA's slow offensive start continues in 10-1 loss to Dirtbags

In its opening three-game series against North Carolina, UCLA scored 11 runs but managed only 14 hits. The No. 15 Bruins tried to turn that around against Long Beach State on Tuesday night, but it was the Dirtbags' offense that broke free. 

UCLA fell to 1-3 on the season as its offense produced more hits (seven) but only a single run in the 10-1 loss.

The Bruins had baserunners in each of the first six innings against Long Beach State starter Dave Smith, but were just two for 12 with runners on base and struggled even more with runners in scoring position, going one for 8. Smith routinely escaped jams, giving up just one run in 5 1/3 innings despite seven hits -- four of which were doubles.

Offense wasn't an issue for the Dirtbags (3-1). They notched 13 hits and scored in six of the first eight innings. After a sacrifice fly in the first inning, they scored three runs in the second inning -- two on a Lucas Tancas double. UCLA got its lone run in the third inning when Trent Chatterton doubled home Christoph Bono, but Jeff Nellis quickly got that run back for Long Beach State with a solo home run the next half inning.

The Dirtbags added runs in the fourth and sixth innings before Tancas produced the death knell with a three-run homer to left-center field in the eighth inning. He finished the game two for three with five RBIs. Rasmussen and Jarren Duran each drove in two runs while leadoff hitter Garrett Hampson scored four runs.

Long Beach State's relievers retired all 11 batters they faced -- six by strikeout. UCLA batters continue to have whiff issues. They struck out 11 times Tuesday and now have 49 in four games. 

The only Bruin to reach base multiple times was Kort Peterson, who had three hits. UCLA starting pitcher Hunter Virant took the loss after giving up four runs on four hits in 1 2/3 innings.

The Bruins hope a change of scenary will help turn things around as they travel to San Luis Obispo for a three-game series at Cal Poly this weekend. Long Beach State will host Arizona State this weekend.

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