The No. 6-ranked UCLA Bruins took the first of a three-game weekend series, 9-3, at No. 8 USC on Friday afternoon at Dedeaux Field in front of 1,816 fans.
Ty Moore set the tone early for the Bruins when he blasted a three-run home run off the Dedeaux Field scoreboard in right field four batters into the game.
Christoph Bono added a three-run homer in the seventh inning and the Bruins cruised to a win to snap a four-game losing streak against the Trojans. Bono finished two for three with with four runs batted in.
Despite falling behind 5-0, USC had several opportunities to get back into the game.
The Trojans put the first two batters on base in the second, third and fourth innings. They were able to break through for runs only in the third inning, though. USC loaded the bases with no outs and Jeremy Martinez hit a bloop single to get the Trojans on the scoreboard. UCLA starter James Kaprielian only gave up one more run as he was able to get a double play and a strikeout to minimize the damage.
It was a common theme as UCLA pitchers stranded 11 runners on base for the day. Kaprielian wasn't his sharpest but made big pitches when he needed to get out of jams. He pitched six innings, giving up five hits and five walks but only two runs to improve to 7-2 on the season. Brent Wheatley took the loss after surrendering five runs (four earned) in 5 1/3 innings.
Chris Keck and Martinez both finished with three hits and an RBI. Bobby Stahel hit a solo home run for USC.
The teams resume the series tomorrow night at 7:30.