The Wright State baseball team outhit #12 UCLA 7-6, but a five-run second proved to be the difference as the Bruins defeated the Raiders 6-3 in the series opener Friday night in Los Angeles.
UCLA loaded the bases in the second with no outs on two walks and an infield hit, but Raider starting pitcher Casey Henn came up with a strikeout and got the next batter to hit into a force out at second for the second out as a run scored.
Kevin Kramer, however, singled in another run and Pat Valaika, the brother of former Cincinnati Red Chris Valaika, followed with a three-run homer to left to make it 5-0.
WSU answered right back with a pair of runs in the third as Beau Phillips walked and Mark Fowler delivered a two-run homer to left center, his first of the year, and tacked on another in the fourth as Justin Kopale singled, stole second and came in on a Phillips hit to cut the deficit to 5-3.
The Bruins, though, made it 6-3 in the bottom of the fourth on a Kramer RBI single and neither team scored the rest of the way.
Garrett Gray paced the Raider offense with two hits while on the mound, Henn struck out seven in his five innings of work and the duo of Joey Hoelzel and E.J. Trapino threw three shutout innings, with Hoelzel striking out four in 2.1 innings.
Wright State (3-4) and UCLA (6-2) continue the three-game series Saturday at 5:00 Eastern.