Gauchos stab Knights in Easter Classic baseball tournament

The Saddleback College Gauchos baseball team improved their record to 18-10 after sweeping through the Easter Classic last week.

The Gauchos defeated Reedley College, Sequoias College, and Bakersfield College en route to their tournament victory. Saddleback also averaged nearly 12 runs per game in the three games.

The Gauchos started off the tournament with a statement by defeating Reedley, 13-7. Sophomore Alex King led the Gauchos in hitting by going 4-4 with a home run, a double, two singles, two stolen bases, and six RBIs.

Freshman Domnique Key was the starting pitcher and he got the win despite allowing five earned runs and nine hits. Sophomore Brett Barker closed the game out and got his first save of the season.

In the second game of the tournament the Gauchos played even better. Saddleback obliterated Sequoias, 17-3, which were the most runs scored in a game this season. Barker led the Gauchos this time going 4-5 with a home run, a double, two singles and a sacrifice fly. He also drove in seven runs. Saddleback had a great pitching performance from freshman Cameron Aufderheide, who pitched seven innings and only allowed three earned runs.

In the championship game, Saddleback faced off against Bakersfield College. The Gauchos conquered the Knights with a score of 5-2. Saddleback led the entire game after three runs in the first four innings. Freshman Eric Neeley started the game pitching, but only went four and a third innings, giving up two runs. Sophomore Trevor Charpie came in relief of Neeley, notching his third save of the season and allowing zero earned runs. Freshman Jack Kaloogian led the charge hitting, driving in three runs and getting three hits in the victory.

The Gauchos will return to conference play for the rest of the season. Their remaining games will be extremely important because  they are fighting for the playoffs.

Saddleback is currently in seventh place in the Orange Empire Conference and have a 5-8 record in conference play.

Saddleback’s next game is at Riverside City College tomorrow at 2 p.m.