Saddleback took on neighboring Irvine Valley last week on two different occasions, and split the series with its conference rival.
The first outing at Saddleback proved to be a victorious one for the Gauchos, who defeated IVC, 4-3, but fell two days later, 11-2.
Pitcher Robbie Ross earned the win, as Josh Brayley got the save. Ross pitched 6.1 innings, gave up three runs on only four hits meanwhile fooling four batters on third strikes.
Brayley shut the Lasers out the rest of the game, giving up two hits and striking three out.
Mike Cole was the key to setting the Gauchos up to score. The sophomore singled to set up Chad Richardson’s RBI center-field bomb that put the Gauchos up, 3-2, in the fourth inning. The Lasers came back to tie in the fifth, but that was as close as they came. In the sixth inning Cole singled again, then advanced into scoring position on an error, leaving Richardson in yet another RBI opportunity.
That was an opportunity he took full advantage of, as he scored the go-ahead run that won the game for the Gauchos.
In the second game, which was played Saturday at IVC’s campus, the tables turned for Saddleback.
Irvine Valley scored 11 runs before Saddleback even put a single run on the board. Seven of Irvine’s runs were all in the seventh inning.
The Gauchos will host Orange Coast College, Thursday, while the Lasers will travel to Riverside College. Both games are at 2:30 p.m.
EYE OF THE TIGER