Baseball goes back for seconds

Baseball goes back for seconds

The Saddleback baseball team won its second game of the day when it defeated Glendale College, 6-3, on Tuesday night at Doug Fritz Field.  The Gauchos rallied from a 3-0 deficit to improve to 5-3 on the season.

Saddleback was faced with an odd situation on Tuesday, hosting Southwestern College at 2:00 PM and then moving up Wednesday's scheduled game against Glendale College to Tuesday night to avoid the impending storm that was approaching the West Coast.   The Gauchos enjoyed two helpings, defeating Southwestern in the opener before rallying to beat Glendale in the nightcap.

Saddleback trailed Glendale through 4.5 innings, 3-0, and looked as if the day was going to loom too large.  The Gauchos turned doubt into optimism in the bottom half of the fifth inning when they rallied for four runs, taking a lead they would never relinquish.  For good measure, Saddleback then scored two more times in the bottom half of the sixth inning and never looked back.

Saddleback sent eight batters to the plate in the bottom half of the fifth, chasing Glendale starter Gerardo Ramirez from the game.  The Gauchos started out with three straight hits as Dylan Smith and Demitri Colacchio led off the inning with back-to-back singles before Ryan Thibert doubled down the left-field line to give the Gauchos their first run of the game.  Eric Burckle then walked, setting up bases loaded with one out in the inning.  Riley Kasper stepped to the plate and worked the count full before driving the ball into the right field corner.  The ball was caught, but provided plenty of time for Colacchio to tag and score from third base to cut the deficit to 3-2.  The next batter was Zack Bowman, who laced a ball down the left field line to bring home Thibert to tie the game and force Glendale to go to its bullpen.  Willie Lajoie greeted Kyle Nicol with a slow roller to short, bringing home Burckle with the fourth run of the inning.

The sixth inning had a similar feel, as Smith started a rally with one out in the inning when he singled to center field.  He then stole second before being drove home by Colacchio, who hammered a ball to the gap in left-center field for a 5-3 lead.  Colacchio would come around to score later in the inning when the Vaqueros walked Bowman with the bases loaded, giving the Gauchos a 6-3 lead.  Colacchio, Smith and Thibert all finished with two hits on the night.

The pitching staff settled down after a couple of rough innings in the early stages.  Zak Herbers (2-0) pitched through the fifth inning to pick up his second win of the season, striking out seven Glendale batters along the way.  He gave way to a bullpen that included Scott Armstrong, Matt Comnos, Wyatt Boone and Noah Moya, who all pitched one inning apiece.  Saddleback pitchers combined for 11 strikeouts on the night.

Saddleback is now 5-3 overall on the season and are scheduled for a road game at Palomar College on Friday, weather permitting.  The Gauchos and Comets are scheduled to start at 2:00 PM in San Marcos.