The Saddleback baseball team improved to 7-4 on the season with a 1-0 win against Grossmont College on Friday at Doug Fritz Field. Sophomore pitcher Zak Herbers shut down the Griffins for eight innings in picking up the win.
Saddleback was looking to bounce back from a tough 2-1 loss earlier in the week to El Camino College and found themselves in another nail-biter on Friday. Herbers kept the Gauchos in the game with a brilliant performance on the mound while the offense did just enough to scrape out a one-run win.
Herbers pitched eight innings, striking out six while walking just one. He never allowed a runner past second base after the opening inning before turning the ball over to Scott Armstrong in the ninth inning. Armstrong then closed the door with a perfect ninth, getting the Griffins to hit into three straight groundball outs.
Saddleback scored its lone run in the bottom of the fourth inning when Chris Demgen led off the inning with a double down the left field line and was quickly driven home by Casey Downs, who lined a base hit to right field for the go-ahead run. Saddleback was frustrated on offense for most of the day, outhitting the Griffins 11-5 but failing to distance themselves in what turned into a close game.
Saddleback will play again on Saturday when they host both Compton College and Southwestern College. The Gauchos and Compton are scheduled to start at 1:00 PM with the matchup against Southwestern scheduled for 6:00 PM.