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UCLA baseball seeks to end losing streak with home Washington State series

Coach John Savage talks to multiple UCLA baseball players during a mound visit. (Michael Gallagher/Daily Bruin)

Baseball


Washington State
Friday, 6 p.m.

Jackie Robinson Stadium
UCLA Live Stream-2
Team
Saturday, 2 p.m.

Jackie Robinson Stadium
UCLA Live Stream-2
Team
Sunday, 12 p.m.

Jackie Robinson Stadium
UCLA Live Stream-2

By Noah Massey

March 14, 2024 1:13 p.m.

Roman Martin pointed to togetherness after the Bruins dropped their seventh straight game Tuesday.

“I think we get pretty separated,” the freshman infielder said. “That’s our main problem.”

But when the Bruins host the Cougars in their second series of conference play, they’ll have a chance to get on the mend.

UCLA baseball (5-10, 0-3 Pac-12) will face Washington State (9-6, 1-2) from Friday to Sunday at Jackie Robinson Stadium for its first Pac-12 home series of the season.

Martin said the Bruins need to take their coach’s advice to reenter the win column.

“I think once we come together and play as one, just like coach Savage (coach John Savage says,” Martin said. “I think we’ll be right on track because we have the talent.”

Over the losing streak, the Bruins have averaged 2.86 runs per game – below their season average of 4.67 and even further below last season’s average of 6.36.

To combat the lowered offensive output, Savage has switched up his lineup to find the winning combination, he said.

“It’s good to move guys around,” Savage said. “Particularly when you know you’re not winning. You got to give guys opportunities.”

UCLA’s losing streak has been characterized by late-inning struggles for relievers, with six of its seven defeats being attributed to the bullpen. The Bruins’ foes have scored winning runs in the seventh inning or later in five of the losses.

Following an opening series sweep of Gonzaga, UCLA has not won a single weekend series game. It has since amassed eight straight losses over the past three weekends – a trend it will hope to buck in the games ahead.

“We got to stay with each other and be able to bounce back,” Savage said. “That’s the nature of baseball.”

Despite starting the season with a 5-10 record, the Bruins remain less than 30% of the way through their season, with 27 of their 30 Pac-12 games remaining to be played.

The last time the Cougars ventured into Los Angeles in 2022, the Bruins swept them in a three-game series and cumulatively outscored them 22-8.

Achieving the same feat this time around could get UCLA on track to be in the national conversation once again.

“Just got to get back at it,” Savage said. “We got to play Bruin baseball, like I just told the guys. It’s an opportunity for us to have a good practice on Thursday and get back out on the weekend.”

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