CBB: SBCC rally falls short

L.A. Pierce took a 5-0 lead in the second inning on Thursday, then held on to beat No. 4 SBCC 5-4 in a WSC North baseball game at Pershing Park.

The loss knocked the Vaqueros (24-8, 13-7) out of a first-place tie with Oxnard. The Condors (14-8) outslugged Moorpark 11-9 on Thursday to take a one-game lead over the Vaqueros with four to play.

Catcher Jimmy Hill went 3-4 and drove in a pair of runs. Brandon Evans, Connor McManigal and Noeh Martinez all had two hits for the Vaqueros, who outhit the visitors 10-6 but stranded 11 runners.

Trailing 5-1 in the third, SBCC loaded the bases with one out on singles by Matt Henderson and Hill and a walk by McManigal. Jake Gagain hit a screamer down the left-field line but it was ruled foul. He ended up looking at strike three and Noeh Martinez grounded out to first to end the threat.

“We can’t expect to win when we’re not ready from pitch one,” said Hill, who raised his team-high average to .380. “It always help to finish a game strong but it doesn’t help when we put ourselves in a hole from pitch one.

“We’re not going to change our style of play. We’re going to continue to push the pedal and put our guys in position to score. The numbers show we’ve been more successful than not this year.”

Derek Galvin (5-1) went six innings and allowed two runs on six hits to beat the Vaqueros for the second time this year. SBCC starter Lucas Jacobsen (6-3) gave up five runs on three hits and four walks in just one inning.

Ian Clark came on with the bases loaded and no outs in the second and walked in a run and allowed a sacrifice fly before settling down. Clark, who had only pitched 4.1 innings this year, shut out the Brahmas on one hit over five innings with five strikeouts and three walks. Steven Ledesma finished with three innings of scoreless ball, allowing just two hits.

“It was a disappointing start,” said coach Jeff Walker. “Ian Clark did a good job of picking us up after what was probably the worst starting performance we’ve had this season. It was a very uninspired effort on our part. I think we played the opponent a little too much.

“A game like this has been coming for a while. We squandered opportunities on the bases, we missed signs, we threw too many balls, too many walks and too many uncompetitive at-bats.

“This was an important game for us and we didn’t play like it. We didn’t get the bounces today.”

The Vaqueros pulled within a run in the bottom of the ninth on an RBI single by Hill and a throwing error that brought home Evans. Pablo Gonzalez came on with a runner on first and one out and got a forceout and a strikeout to end the game.

SBCC travels to Ventura on Saturday for a 1 p.m. game.