Saddleback struggles against OCC

Photo by: Matt Corkill Tony Bone, freshman, along with the Gaucho hitters struggled to produce hits against OCC Saturday.

Photo by: Matt Corkill
Tony Bone, freshman, along with the Gaucho hitters struggled to produce hits against OCC Saturday.

The Gauchos were unable to produce enough timely offense against the Orange Coast College Pirates in their loss, 4-7, at Doug Fritz field on Saturday.

Sophomore starter Tyler Brashears (1-2) was roughed up early by the OCC hitters, allowing four runs on seven hits and two walks in two and third innings pitched. Saddleback’s bats were all but silenced by the Pirate’s starter Jacob Hill (5-0) for the first five innings, allowing only sophomore third baseman Louie Payetta to reach on a single up the middle in the the second. In the sixth, the Gauchos formed a rally after sophomore Brandon Cody led the inning off with a walk and freshman Brett Barker singled through the right side of the infield to advance Cody to second before eventually scoring on a throwing error by the Pirate third baseman that allowed sophomore Slate Miller to reach making it 1-6.

In the bottom of the eighth the Gauchos had a prime opportunity to cut into the Pirate’s 1-6 lead when both Brandon Cody and freshman Brett Barker were hit by pitches and freshman Tony Bone reached on a fielding error by the OCC shortstop with no outs to load the bases. Slate miller was walked to bring in Cody and make it a 2-6 game, but the Pirates turned a double play to end the inning and the rally. Saddleback’s offense came alive in the ninth with two runs driven in by a two out Brett Barker double to right. Unfortunately it was a bit too late as the next batter popped out to end the game 4-7.

“From the beginning their bats were ready and ours weren’t, when we put runs up on the board early it helps our pitchers throw strikes,” freshman catcher Casey Worden said following the loss. “We’ve got to wake up.”

Saddleback (10-7, 2-3) plays next at Cypress (11-7, 2-3) on Tuesday at 2 p.m. and returns to Doug Fritz Field to host Riverside (9-9, 3-2) on Thursday at 2 p.m. as well.

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