Gauchos win the first game of the Playoffs, 7-2.

Sean Byrne

The Saddleback College Gauchos played their first game of the playoffs at home on Friday against the Bakersfield College Renegades.

“It will be a battle,” winning pitcher Evan Manarino said, “they are a good team.”

Coach Sommer McCartney explained that the Gauchos intended to play in an aggressive style against the Renegades. The Gauchos racked up a four run lead within the first two innings.

“We are always trying to be aggressive,” McCartney said.

The fifth inning lead was increased 7-0, and seemed as if Manarino was on his way to another win against Bakersfield. Even though Bakersfield tallied up more hits against Manarino than they did the first time they met, it still wasn’t enough to overcome his pitching abilities.

During the seventh inning the Renegades were able to get points on the board. Although Manarino had already thrown over 80 pitches, which led to Manariano being pulled out of the game to be replaced by Trey Ferketic.

“[Manarino] wanted to go back out,” McCartney said. “He probably could have finished it.”

In the eighth inning the Renegades put up another run, cutting the lead to five, but that was all they could muster up against the Gauchos that day. With the Gauchos racking up seven runs within the first five innings, they really just exploded out of the gates.

“I thought we did a really good job at hitting today,” catcher Kyle Ferret said. “We just wanted to put the ball in play and see what happens, and good things happen when you put the ball in play.”

According to Ferret, the stats show that Bakersfield had too many errors opposed to the Gauchos.

Too many errors you can eventually burry yourself, though some errors did result in points for the Gauchos that wasn’t really the main factor in the game. The defense and the pitching was what really did it. To hold a team that has a batting average over .300 to only two runs is a good pitching and defensive job.

“When Evan is pitching to his potential, you know, he is pretty effective against everybody he has faced,” McCartney said.

Game two against the Bakersfield College Renegades was last Saturday at Saddleback.