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2012 Game Stories

   By Dave Loveton, sports information

*** For Box Scores, go to "2012 Schedule and Results" and click on score

Sunday, May 6 -- Southern Cal Regional, Game 2: SBCC at Rio Hondo, 11 a.m.  #2 Rio Hondo 12, #15 SBCC 1  Final record: 20-19

 Season ends with 12-1 loss in Regional
Rio Hondo outhits Vaqueros 16-2, wins series 2-0

Steven Reveles
 SBCC couldn't do much in Game 2 of the Southern Cal Regional on Saturday and Rio Hondo did everything in a 12-1 victory at Whittier.
 The Vaqueros lost the best-of-3 series two games to none. SBCC, the 15th seed and WSC North co-champion, finishes at 20-19. The No. 2 Roadrunners improved to 35-3 with their 30th straight win.
 Rio Hondo outhit the Vaqueros 16-2 and got a stellar pitching effort from A.J. Gonzalez. He pitched two-hit ball for eight innings, allowing just a first-inning run and two hits. He struck out three and walked two to improve to 11-0.
 "Their guy was good," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We just hit a wall and ran into a strong team."
 The Roadrunners scored three in the fourth to boost the lead to 5-1. Third baseman Andrew Stein was 2-3 with a double, a triple and five RBIs.
 SBCC starter Rich McCaffrey lasted 3 1/3 innings, giving up five runs on seven hits. Lucas Benenati went 4 1/3 frames and allowed four hits, including a two-run homer by Tim Smoley that made it 7-1 in the seventh.
 Leadoff hitter Eli Michaels doubled in the bottom of the first (SBCC was designated as the home team for Game 2) and scored on Joey Epperson's sacrifice fly. The only other hit by the Vaqueros was a two-out single by Pat Cavalier in the fifth.
 SBCC won its last five games in must-win situations to earn a share of the WSC North title and get into the Regional. The Vaqueros opened the playoffs with a marathon 6-5 win in 16 innings over Canyons on Tuesday.
 In Walker's first season at the helm, Santa Barbara claimed its second straight conference title and went to the Regional in back-to-back years for the first time in school history.
 "We battled all year to the last strike and last out," said Walker. "The sophomores set a high standard in their two years here. We have a lot of good guys coming back and good guys coming in.
 "I think we'll be able to defend our WSC title and go farther in the playoffs next year."

Rio Hondo ....... 002 300 205 -- 12 16  0
SBCC ............... 100 000 000 --   1   2  0
 Gonzalez, Smigelski (9) and Doyle; McCaffrey, Benenati (4), Turner (8), Nieves (9), Foote (9) and Dinges. W--Gonzalez 11-0. L--McCaffrey 5-4.
 2B--RH: Davis, Stein, Granados. SB: Michaels. 3B--RH: Stein. HR--RH: Smoley (4), 7th inn., one on.
 Records--RH 35-3, SBCC 20-19.

Saturday, May 5 -- Southern Cal Regional (best-of-3), Game 1: SBCC at Rio Hondo, 1 p.m.  #2 Rio Hondo 4, #15 SBCC 3  Record: 20-18

Rio Hondo edges Vaqueros 4-3
Cavalier goes 2-3 in So Cal Regional

Eli Michaels
 SBCC took a 3-2 lead in the sixth inning of Saturday's Southern Cal Regional opener but Rio Hondo rallied for a 4-3 victory in Whittier.
 It was the 29th straight win for the second-seeded Roadrunners (34-3) and snapped a six-game winning streak for the 15th-seeded Vaqueros (20-18). Game 2 in the best-of-3 series is Sunday at 11 a.m. at Rio Hondo, followed by a third game if necessary.
 "We had a lead in the sixth and they did a good job of battling back," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We were a little nervous and didn't play our best. I thought they were nervous also.
 "We only scored single runs in each inning and we need to do a better job of getting timely hits."
 Right-hander Andrew Morales limited the Vaqueros to three runs on seven hits in 6 innings to improve to 11-0. Vaquero starter Brendon Shoemake gave up four runs on 10 hits in 5 1/3 innings with three strikeouts.
 Andrew Melchor pitched the ninth to earn his 12th save.
 Pat Cavalier was 2-3 for Santa Barbara. Catcher Jared Dinges drove in the go-ahead run in the sixth. Brandon Laubhan and Mark Jebbia also RBIs.
 "Tomorrow will be back in our favor," said Walker. "We'll be the (designated) home team for Game 2 and we love must-win games. Today was the first time it wasn't a must-win situation in two weeks.
 "We've got a great athlete on the mound in Rich McCaffrey and he's been pitching great lately."
 McCaffrey hasn't given up a run in his last 15 1/3 innings.

SBCC .............. 001 101 000 -- 3   7  3
Rio Hondo ...... 011 020 00x -- 4 12  4
 Shoemake, Perez (6), Oshima (6), Foote (7), Turner (8) and Dinges; Morales, Casillas (7), Smigelski (8), Melchor (9) and Doyle. W--Morales 11-0. L--Shoemake 7-5. Save--Melchor 12
 2B--RH: Granados, Ibarra, Doyle.
 Records--SBCC 20-18; RH 34-3.

Tuesday, May 1 -- Southern Cal Regional: Canyons at SBCC, 2 p.m.  SBCC 6, Canyons 5 (16 inn)  Record: 20-17

      Jebbia's walk-off hit caps marathon 6-5 win
He goes 4-6 in playoff opener; McCaffrey throws 8.1 scoreless innings

Vaqs celebrate Jebbia's walk-off hit
 When Mark Jebbia came to the plate with a runner on second base in the 16th inning of Tuesday's Southern Cal Regional, he was just trying to stay calm.
 Jebbia drove a single through the left side with two outs, scoring Zach Zehner and propelling SBCC to a 6-5 victory over Canyons at Pershing Park. The WSC North champion Vaqueros were seeded 15th while the Cougars were No. 18.
 Jebbia went 4-6 with two RBIs and shortstop Steven Reveles was 3-6 in the single-elimination playoff game. It was the longest playoff and one of the longest games in the history of SBCC baseball, lasting four hours and 42 minutes.
 "Whenever I come up in pressure situations, I like to remember that the game stays the same -- you still have to run 90 feet, the pitcher still has to throw it 60 feet, 6 inches," said Jebbia, a 6-4 freshman third baseman from Arcadia. "Pressure is all mental. I just try to relax in those situations."
 With one out in the bottom of the 16th, Zehner hit a ball that hopped over the shortstop's head for a single. After a strikeout, Jebbia stroked one through the hole and into left field. The relay throw hit the Canyons' shortstop in the head, allowing Zehner to sprint home from second base and touch off a wild celebration.
 "Longest game of my life, it was a marathon," said Zehner, who was 2-7 and scored three runs. "I knew we were going to win. We put our hearts on the line and we weren't going to fall short."
 Danny Nieves started for the Vaqueros, who won their sixth straight to improve to 20-17. SBCC has also won six in a row at home and nine of its last 11 at Pershing Park.
 Nieves went six innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on four hits with eight strikeouts and two walks. Cory Jones, Canyons' starter, was clocked in the 93-94 range on the radar gun. He struck out eight of the first nine batters and finished with 11 strikeouts and seven walks in 4.1 innings.
Danny Nieves
 Southpaw John Salas relieved Jones with two on and one out after the Vaqueros had scored three to take a 5-3 lead in the fifth. Zehner drove in two with a double to left and Jebbia brought him home on a triple to left-center.
 Salas finished the game for Canyons, amassing 11.1 innings, and didn't give up a run until the 16th. He threw 142 pitches, striking out seven and allowing 10 hits.
 "That was an unbelievable effort," said Vaquero coach Jeff Walker. "I've never seen anything like that, throwing almost 12 innings and 142 pitches. That was absolutely amazing."
 Jake Jelmini tied the game at 5 with a two-run homer to right-center with one out in the seventh.
 Rich McCaffrey, normally the Vaqueros' No. 2 starter, came on in relief with two outs in the eighth and turned in a stellar performance. The left-hander pitched 8 1/3  innings of scoreless ball and held the Cougars (20-16-1) to four singles. He struck out 11 and didn't walk a batter.
 McCaffrey struck out the side in the 12th and 13th frames, using the minimum 9 pitches in the 13th
 "Everything was working today, my fastball -- inside and outside -- curveball and changeup," said McCaffrey, a sophomore left-hander. "All season, I've been a little wild. These last few outings, I decided my stuff is good enough and I'm going to throw right at 'em.
 "If they hit it, they hit it and if they don't, they don't. So far, they haven't hit it."
 Santa Barbara, which left 18 runners on base, loaded the bases with one out in the 12th when Jebbia was hit by a pitch, Jared Dinges doubled over the first baseman's head and Eli Michaels was hit on the forearm.
 Joey Gonzalez hit into a chopper to third and Canyons turned it into a 5-2-3 double play.
  "That was McCaffrey's best performance of the year and it came just four days after he pitched a scoreless seven innings (in a 4-1 win at Oxnard)," noted Walker. "We did a good job of coming back early in the game. Against a guy like Jones, you have to grind it out, get the pitch count up and try to get him out of the game.
 "This would have been a tough one to lose. I'm sure glad we were on the right side of this game. This gives us great momentum for the playoffs."
 The Vaqueros will play a best-of-3 Regional series this weekend at No. 2 Rio Hondo, the Foothill Conference champion with a 33-3 record. Saturday will be a single game at 1 p.m. and Sunday's action starts at 11 a.m.

   (16 innings)
Canyons ....... 021 000 200 000 000 0 -- 5  11  1
SBCC ............. 020 030 000 000 000 1 -- 6  16  2
 Two outs when winning run scored.
 Jones, Salas (5) and Browne; Nieves, Benenati (7), Shoemake (8), McCaffrey (8) and Dinges. W--McCaffrey 5-3. L--Salas 3-7.
 2B--SB: Gonzalez, Zehner, Reveles, Dinges. 3B--SB: Jebbia. HR--C: Jelmini (6), 7th inn., one on.
 Records--C 20-16-1. SB 20-17.

Friday, April 27 -- SBCC at Oxnard, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 4, Oxnard 1  Records: 19-17, 12-8 (WSC North co-champs)

 Vaqueros claim second straight WSC crown
McCaffrey throws 4-hitter for 7 innings in 4-1 road victory

Rich McCaffrey
 SBCC went to Oxnard on Friday in search of a victory to cap the regular season and a little help from its conference rivals.
 The Vaqueros got both, allowing them to claim their second straight WSC North title. They'll share the crown with Cuesta after beating Oxnard for the second straight day, 4-1.
 It's the first time in school history that the Vaqueros won back-to-back conference championships. It was also the first time SBCC has been in first place since March 8 when the Vaqueros were 2-0.
 Santa Barbara finihed with a flourish, winning the last five games with a whopping 49 runs (9.8 average). The Vaqueros (19-17) will share the conference title with Cuesta after both finished at 12-8. Moorpark (11-8) can make it a tri-championship by beating Hancock on Saturday.
 Cuesta beat Ventura 10-8 on Friday and Hancock blanked Moorpark 3-0. Cuesta will be the No. 1 seed from the conference based on its RPI Rating and the Vaqueros will be No. 2 even if they tie Moorpark because they own the tiebreaker.
 Left-hander Rich McCaffrey was masterful in the first seven innings on Friday, holding the Condors (15-21, 7-13) to no runs on four singles. He struck out eight and walked two.
 "This is such a great moment," said McCaffrey, a sophomore transfer from College of San Mateo. "In the middle of league, I was hoping we would scrape in. The playoffs looked pretty distant.
 "We've been up-and-down all year but everything has come together in the last two weeks. I'm really proud of the team."
 It was the second great pitching performance in two days, coming on the heels of Brendon Shoemake's five-hitter in a 7-2 triumph over Oxnard on Thursday.
 "I didn't have my best stuff today but I was really calm," said McCaffrey. "I did some meditation on the way down here. I was just focused on taking it one pitch at a time."
2012 WSC North champs

 Steven Reveles went 3-4, raising his team-high average to .350. He scored the first run on a sacrifice fly by Mark Jebbia in the second. SBCC made it 2-0 in the third when Eli Michaels singled to right, took second on a sacrifice by Joey Gonzalez and scored on Brandon Laubhan's two-out single through the right side.
 The Vaqueros added two more with two outs in the fifth. Gonzalez was hit by a pitch, went to second on a passed ball and scored on Joey Epperson's single to right. Epperson stole his 19th base in 23 tries (he's 10th in the state) and scored on Reveles' single to left-center.
 Reveles, a freshman shortstop from Dos Pueblos High, leads the team in RBIs with 30. He's hit safely in nine of his last 10 games.
 "Our guys battled through some adversity and we grinded out some tough games," said first-year coach Jeff Walker. "We had our backs to the wall and we overcame. We did a great job of sticking with the process, living in the moment and we just took it game-to-game.
 "The pitching by Shoemake (on Thursday) and Rich were our two best performances of the year. Those are clutch performances at a clutch time. It was a good team effort today."
 McCaffrey got out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the sixth with a flyout to right and a groundout to second. Danny Nieves pitched the last two innings, surrendering a run on three hits in the ninth.
 Nieves had runners at first and second with no outs and a 4-1 lead. He secured the title by getting a line-out to right, a strikeout and a groundout.
 The So Cal Regional playoff pairings will be announced on Sunday and SBCC could play a first-round game on Tuesday. Those two games will pit the 18th seed at No. 15 and No. 17 at 16 in a single-elimination battle.
 The survivors move on to the Regional on May 5-6 in a best 2-of-3 series. Santa Barbara beat Riverside 2-1 in a Regional series last year and reached the Super Regional for the first time.

SBCC ........... 011 020 000 -- 4  8  0
Oxnard ........ 000 000 001 -- 1  7  1
 McCaffrey, Nieves (8) and Dinges; Barroso, Navarro (7), Abbott (8), Kurz (8) and Griffith. W--McCaffrey 4-3. L--Barroso 3-3. Records--SBCC 19-17, 12-8 WSC North; Oxnard 15-21, 7-13.

Thursday, April 26 -- Oxnard at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 7, Oxnard 2  Records: 18-17, 11-8

     Shoemake tosses 5-hitter in 7-2 victory
Vaqueros win fourth straight to move within a half-game of first

Brendon Shoemake
 SBCC right-hander Brendon Shoemake turned in his best performance of the year on Thursday at Pershing Park, holding Oxnard to five hits in a 7-2 victory that vaulted the Vaqueros within a half-game of first place in the WSC North.
 The Vaqueros (18-17, 11-8 WSC North) won their fourth straight game. Cuesta (11-8), which has led the conference all season, lost to Ventura 6-3 and fell into a second-place tie with SBCC. Moorpark, the leader at 11-7, had its game against Hancock postponed by a wet field and moved to Saturday.
 Shoemake, a 6-4 freshman from La Canada High, allowed just one earned run with seven strikeouts and two walks. It was the first complete game of the year by any Vaquero hurler and it came at a perfect time with Santa Barbara playing its last two games on back-to-back days.
 The Vaqueros finish the regular season on Friday with a 2:30 p.m. contest at Oxnard.
 "My velo (velocity) wasn't too high today," Shoemake noted. "Actually it was good in the first through fourth innings. Then I just started hitting my spots."
 Shoemake (7-4) threw 122 pitches and got 12 flyball outs.
 "That was a huge pick-me-up," said Santa Barbara coach Jeff Walker. "That was Brendon's best effort of the year. He played like a Warrior today."
 Sheldon Ekstrand was also strong for the Condors (15-20, 7-12), going seven innings and allowing six earned runs on eight hits.
 Joey Gonzalez paced SBCC's offense by going 3-4 with two runs. Santa Barbara has scored 45 runs in the last four games and is 8-2 in its last 10 at home.
 The Vaqueros staged a five-run rally with two outs in the third. Eli Michaels started it with a single to right and Gonzalez followed with another hit to the left of the first baseman. After Joey Epperson walked to load the bases, Brandon Laubhan and Steven Reveles both drilled two-run singles.
 Zach Zehner, who's hitting .800 in his last three games (8-10), brought in Reveles with a single to right, boosting the lead to 5-1.
 "It's always a team effort," said Shoemake. "I wouldn't have been there without the defense behind me and the offense."
 Shoemake said he was tired in the seventh but "just kept making pitches." Walker stated that it was a "no-brainer" to send Shoemake out for the ninth. The right-hander capped his first complete game with a 1-2-3 ninth on a groundout, strikeout and flyout.
 Shoemake gave up a run on two doubles in the sixth, then escaped second-and-third situations in the sixth and eighth frames. Oxnard loaded the bases on a two-out walk in the eighth but Shoemake got a flyout to center field.
 Reveles, the WSC Player of the Week, was 2-4  and Laubhan was 2-3.
 The Vaqueros extended their lead to 7-1 in the fifth when Zehner was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and Pat Cavalier reached on an error, scoring Laubhan.
 "Everything is clicking ever since we started doing this Japanese BP (batting practice) and seeing breaking balls," said Laubhan. "We have a coach pitch and a pitching machine throwing breaking balls. Everyone's waiting back, seeing the ball well and driving through the ball.
 "I don't know why it's called Japanese BP -- coach (Pat) Rose said it one day and it just stuck."
 The Vaqueros got just two hits in their last five innings against Ekstrand and Robert Diaz, who pitched the eighth.
 When asked about the playoff possibilities, Walker said the Vaqueros have to stay focused.
 "We just have to control the controllables," he stated. "We need to concentrate on what's in front of us.
 "Whatever happens in the other two games, it's going to be a dogfight to the end. We're going to grind it out all the way."

Oxnard ........ 010 001 000 -- 2  5  2
SBCC ........... 005 020 00x -- 7  8  2
 Ekstrand, Diaz (8) and Griffith; Shoemake and Dinges. W--Shoemake 7-4. L--Ekstrand 4-5.
 2B--O: Griffith, Reyes.
 Records--Oxnard 15-20, 7-12 WSC North; SBCC 18-17, 11-8.

Tuesday, April 24 -- Cuesta at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 9, #4 Cuesta 8 (10 inns)  Records: 17-17, 10-8 (2nd place)

Vaqueros edge Cuesta 9-8 on wild pitch in 10th
Zehner goes 3-4 with HR and 4 RBIs

 Zach Zehner had a monster day at the plate on Tuesday and SBCC weathered a ninth-inning comeback to beat Cuesta 9-8 on a walk-off wild pitch in the 10th.
 The Vaqueros (17-17, 10-8) beat the first-place Cougars (22-12, 11-7) for the second time in four days to move within a game of the top spot in the WSC North baseball race with two to play. Cuesta, ranked No. 4 in Southern Cal, and Moorpark lead at 11-7, followed by SBCC at 10-8. The top two will make the Southern Cal Regional and its possible that all three could qualify.
 Zehner went 3-4 with a homer, a double and four RBIs. His solo homer in the fifth was a booming blast that landed on the softball infield well beyond the left-field fence. That stretched the Vaquero lead to 6-3.
 "He's been swinging a hot bat," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "That's about the farthest ball I've seen hit this year."
 Zehner, a 6-4 freshman outfielder from Torrey Pines High in San Diego, is 7-9 in the last two games vs. Cuesta with five RBIs and four runs. He's raised his average 37 points in the last four days and he's third on the squad at .315.
 "I saw two sliders my first two at-bats and I punished them," said Zehner. "I thought they'd go fastball in my third at-bat and I jumped on the opportunity.
 "We're all working together. We just want to win and make the playoffs."
 Joey Gonzales, Joey Epperson, Brandon Laubhan, Pat Cavalier and Jared Dinges all had two hits for the Vaqueros, who rapped out 13 hits.
 SBCC has scored 38 runs on 44 hits in its last three games. It's the first time all year the Vaqueros have won three in a row.
 Cody Lavelli went 3-5 with two RBIs for Cuesta, which scored three in the seventh and was down to its final strike, trailing 9-8 in the ninth with two outs and no one on against Lucas Benenati.
 Josh Miller singled, Alex Detz caromed a single off Benenati's foot and Lavalli singled up the middle to tie the game 8-8.
 In the SBCC 10th, Dinges reached on an error and was out at second on a fielder's choice. Gonzalez bunted for a hit and Epperson singled to right to load the bases. After a strikeout, Steven Reveles came to the plate.
 Brett Haringa, who had entered with two outs in the ninth, threw a wild pitch on the first pitch, bringing home Eli Michaels with the winning run.
 "We did a good job of getting guys on base and getting them home," said Walker. "Give Cuesta credit, they're in first for a reason and they did a good job of coming back.
 "It was kind of crummy in the ninth when we had a one-run lead, two outs and no one on. That was a tough single that went off Benenati's leg. If Benenati isn't such a great athlete, maybe he doesn't deflect that ball and the game's over on a groundout."
 Danny Nieves pitched 6 1/3 for the Vaqueros, giving up six runs (five earned) on six hits. Benenati (3-1) tossed the final 3 2/3 innings, holding the Cougars to two runs on five hits.
 "We did an excellent job of staying in the moment today," Walker added. "They had the potential go-ahead run in scoring position in the ninth and 10th. Lucas gave a great performance and grinded through.
 "The baseball Gods were on our side. Any win is a good win."
 The Vaqueros play their final regular-season home game on Thursday against Oxnard at 2:30 p.m.

  (10 innings)
Cuesta ........ 010 201 301 0 -- 8  11  2
SBCC ........... 302 012 000 1 -- 9  13  1
 Coldiron, Nelson (6), Nagy (9), Haringa (9) and Nieporte; Nieves, Benenati and Dinges. W--Benenati 3-1. L--Haringa 4-2.
 2B--C: Colick. SB: Zehner, Laubhan, Cavalier. 3B--C: Lavalli. HR--SB: Zehner (3), 5th inn., none on.
 Records--Cuesta 22-12, 11-7 WSC North; SBCC 17-17, 10-8.

Saturday, April 21 -- SBCC at Cuesta, 1 p.m.  SBCC 17, #4 Cuesta 5  Records: 16-17, 9-8

  Vaqueros crush Cuesta 17-5
Laubhan, Gonzalez combine for 9 RBIs

Brandon Laubhan
 The bats were unstoppable on Saturday as SBCC erupted for 17 runs and 20 hits in a 17-5 win over first-place Cuesta in San Luis Obispo.
 Center fielder Brandon Laubhan went 4-6 with five RBIs and Joey Gonzales was 3-6 with four RBIs. Zach Zehner was 4-5 with two runs scored and Joey Epperson was 2-4 with a solo homer in the third.
 Laubhan delivered two-run singles in the eighth and ninth. He's second on the squad with 26 RBIs, one behind Steven Reveles.
 SBCC improved to 16-17 and 9-8 in the WSC North, moving within two games of Cuesta (22-11, 11-6), the No. 4-ranked team in Southern California. Moorpark is in second place at 10-7 with three games remaining.
 The first six batters in the Santa Barbara lineup went a combined 17-30 with 11 runs and 14 RBIs.
 The Vaqueros, who've scored 29 runs in their last two games, led 8-3 after three innings and 10-5 after eight. They added seven more in the ninth on three hits and an error.
 Cuesta committed four errors, leading to seven unearned runs.
 Stephen Foote (1-1) earned his first win after relieving starter Rich McCaffrey with two outs and two on in the fifth. He got a strikeout to end the threat and pitched three innings, allowing just one run on four hits with four strikeouts.
 Reveles, Eli Michaels and Jared Dinges each had two hits for the Vaqueros, who had 33 players reach base. Reveles and Dinges drove in two runs apiece.
 Reveles, who hit .467 in three games this week (7-15), extended his hitting streak to seven games.
 The Vaqueros have another key game on Tuesday when they host Cuesta at 2:30 p.m. On Thursday, they take on Oxnard at Pershing Park, followed by the regular-season finale on Friday at Oxnard.

SBCC ............ 215 000 027 -- 17 20  1
Cuesta ......... 021 010 010 --   5   8  4
 McCaffrey, Foote (5), Nieves (9) and Dinges; Goldsmith, Nelson (3), Nagy (8), Turner (8), Haringa (9) and Nieporte. W--Foote 1-1. L--Goldsmith 4-2.
 2B--SB: Dinges. HR--SB: Epperson (2), 3rd inn., none on.

Thursday, April 19 -- Hancock at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 12, Hancock 11  Records: 15-17, 8-8 WSC North (3rd place)

    Vaqueros win a wild one, 12-11
Reveles drives in four; McCaffrey gets first save

Rich McCaffrey 
SBCC built a 12-5 lead with a four-run seventh inning on Thursday at Pershing Park, then held on for a wild 12-11 WSC North triumph over Hancock.
 "That's a community college game at its finest -- no lead was safe," said Vaquero coach Jeff Walker. "They've swung the bats well all year and we knew they'd come back. We did a good job of hanging in there. A less mentally tough team would have folded when they started coming back.
 "Lucas (Benenati) did a good job on throwing a lot of zeroes (in relief) and we got some timely hitting."
 Steven Reveles went 2-5 and knocked in four runs for the Vaqueros (15-17, 8-8), who moved into sole possession of third place in the WSC North, a game ahead of Hancock (12-20, 7-9). Reveles extended his hitting streak to six games and took over the team RBI lead with 25.
 "We put a lot of runs on the board," said Reveles, a freshman shortstop from Dos Pueblos High. "Everyone had a good approach at the plate and we built off each other."
 Rich McCaffrey, normally the No. 2 starter, made his first relief appearance after Shane Turner hit two batters with one out in the ninth and the Vaqueros ahead 12-11. McCaffrey, a 6-2 left-hander, fanned the last two batters to earn the save.
 Brandon Laubhan got SBCC going early with a two-run triple in the first and Reveles brought him home with an RBI groundout. The Vaqueros went ahead 5-0 in the second on a run-scoring double by Eli Michaels.
 Michaels, the leadoff hitter, was 3-5 while Joey Epperson drew four walks and scored three times.
 After Hancock tied it with a 5-run third that chased starter Brendon Shoemake, the Vaqueros regained the upper hand on a two-run single by Jared Dinges that made it 7-5. Reveles added an RBI single in the fifth and his two-run triple in the seventh made it 11-5.
 Reveles scored the 12th run on an infield error.
 "I felt like every time I was up, there were runners on," Reveles said. "He got ahead of me early, then he threw me an 0-2 curveball and left it up (on the triple).
 "We know we basically have to win out now (in the last four game) to make the playoffs. We have to play every game like its our last one."
 Andrew Clark paced the Bulldogs by going 3-5 with two runs and an RBI. Jacob Cano was 2-4 and had a controversial three-run homer to center in the eighth that cut the deficit to 12-11.
 "That ball bounced (over the temporary 4-foot fence) and should have been a ground-rule double," said Walker. "It's not the first time it's happened here and as long as we have a plastic fence, it won't be the last time.
 "It is what it is. Hopefully when I'm done coaching here in 30 years, it evens out and we get as many of those for us and we do against us. That was a big blow but we did a good job of getting out of it."
 Benenati got the win by pitching 5 1/3 innings of relief. He gave up eight hits and blanked the Bulldogs for four innings until they erupted for six in the eighth. Only two of those runs were earned. He struck out four and didn't walk a batter.
 The 12 runs were the second-highest total of the season. The Vaqueros pounded four doubles and two triples.
 "It's nice to get some runs because we've struggled to score them lately," added Walker. "Every game is important, especially toward the end of the year. This was a big win, not only because we were tied with Hancock but we also took the season series with them 3-1, so we have the tiebreaker if we need it."
 The Vaqueros travel to first-place Cuesta on Saturday at 1 p.m. The Cougars (11-5) moved a game ahead of Moorpark (10-6) with a 5-1 win over the Raiders on Thursday.

Hancock ...... 005 000 060 -- 11 11  4
SBCC ........... 320 210 40x -- 12 11  5
 Delfin, Hernandez (5), St. Laurent (7), Dunsmore (8) and Mallory; Shoemake, Benenati (3), Turner (9), McCaffrey (9) and Dinges. W--Benenati 2-1. L--Delfin 5-2. Save--McCaffrey 1.
 2B--H: Mallory, Mowatt. SB: Cavalier, Michaels, Jebbia, Dinges. 3B--SB: Laubhan, Reveles.
 Records--AHC 12-20, 7-9 WSC North; SBCC 15-17, 8-8.

Tuesday, April 17 -- SBCC at Hancock, 2:30 p.m.  Hancock 4, SBCC 3 (11 inn)  Records: 14-17, 7-8

   Hancock edges Vaqueros in 11
Jebbia, Reveles have 3 hits each in 4-3 setback

SBCC went ahead 3-2 in Tuesday's game with a run in the 11th, then fell to Hancock 4-3 on a bases-loaded, walk-off single by Mitch Hollingsworth.
 Mark Jebbia and Steve Reveles were both 3-for-5 for the Vaqueros (14-17, 7-8) in the WSC North game at Santa Maria. Jebbia's one-out RBI single tied it at 2-2 in the ninth and his RBI double scored Reveles with the go-ahead run in the 11th.
 Hancock committed three errors in the ninth and both of Santa Barbara's runs were unearned.
 With the bases loaded and one out in the Hancock 11th, reliever Shane Turner hit Mike Foley to force in the tying run. Hollingsworth followed with his game-winning hit.
 "This one hurts a little bit," said coach Jeff Walker. "We had a good effort to score twice and tie it in the ninth. Then we had two outs with a runner on first in the 11th and couldn't close it out."
 Moorpark (10-5) beat Cuesta 9-7 to move into a first-place tie with the Cougars atop the WSC North. The Vaqueros are tied for third with Hancock (12-19, 7-8).
 Danny Nieves turned in a solid seven innings. The sophomore left-hander allowed one run on four hits with 12 groundouts. Joe Perez was also strong for the Bulldogs, holding SBCC to two runs (none earned) on six hits over 8 1/3 innings.

   (11 innings)
SBCC ............ 000 000 002 01 -- 3  9  0
Hancock ....... 000 000 110 02 -- 4  9  4
Nieves, Benenati (8), Turner (9) and Dinges; Perez, Shrider (9) and Spears, Mallory (8). W--Shrider 1-4. L--Turner 1-2.
 2B--SB: Jebbia.
 Records--SB 14-17, 7-8 WSC North; AHC 12-19, 7-8.

Saturday, April 14 -- Ventura at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 3, Ventura 2  Records: 14-16, 7-7 (3rd place)

        Epperson sparks 3-2 win
Dinges drives in game-winner; Benenati gets fifth save

 Joey Epperson went 3-4 for the second straight game on Saturday and SBCC rallied past Ventura 3-2 in a WSC North game at Pershing Park.
 The Vaqueros (14-16, 7-7) trailed 2-0 before their first at-bat. They responded with two in the bottom of the first on an RBI single by Epperson and a double-play grounder that scored Epperson.
 Epperson is batting .667 in his last three games (8-12) with three RBIs. The sophomore first baseman from Orinda, Calif., has hit in three straight games and eight of his last nine to boost his average from .313 to .351. He also has an RBI in six consecutive games.

 SBCC took a 3-2 lead in the seventh. Zach Zehner reached on an error, pinch-hitter Tyler Sharpe walked and they moved up 90 feet on Mark Jebbia's sacrifice bunt.
 Catcher Jared Dinges delivered a two-strike single through the right side to bring home Sharpe with the decisive run. Dinges also threw out a runner at third in the sixth inning.
 The Vaqueros are third in the WSC North behind Cuesta (9-4) and Moorpark (8-5). Ventura is 16-14 and 6-8.
 Rich McCaffrey went 5 1/3 innings but struggled with his control. The left-hander gave up two runs on six hits with three strikeouts. He also walked four and hit four batters.
 "He wasn't sharp but he did his best Houdini impression," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "He worked his way out of a couple of jams."
 Lucas Benenati pitched the last two innings to earn his second save in three days and his fifth of the year. He gave up two singles with two out in the ninth but got the final out on a flyout to center.

Ventura ....... 200 000 000 -- 2  9  3
SBCC ........... 200 000 10x -- 3  7  0
 Doherty, Ginther (8) and Burke; McCaffrey, Nieves (6), Benenati (8) and Dinges. W--Nieves 3-4. L--Doherty 1-3. Save--Benenati 5.

Thursday, April 12 -- SBCC at Ventura, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 5, Ventura 2  Records: 13-16, 6-7 WSC North

  Zehner hits key homer in 5-2 win
Shoemake holds Ventura to 2 runs in 6 innings

 Zach Zehner broke open a tight battle with a two-run homer in the eighth on Thursday and SBCC went on to beat Ventura 5-2 in a WSC North game.
 The visiting Vaqueros, playing their first game in eight days, improved to 13-16 overall and 6-7 in conference. Ventura fell to 16-13 and 6-7.
 Joey Epperson went 3-4 with a triple and an RBI single in the first. The sophomore has at least one hit in 15 of his last 17 games. He's 5-8 in his last two appearances, raising his team-leading batting average to .336.
 Brendon Shoemake limited the Pirates to two runs (one earned) on six hits over six innings. He struck out three and walked four.
 Lucas Benenati entered with a runner on first and no outs in the seventh. With runners on first and third, he got out of the jam on a rare forceout from left fielder Eli Michaels to second baseman Joey Gonzalez, a failed squeeze bunt and a flyout.
 Benenati gave up just one hit over the last three innings to earn his fourth save. The freshman from Santa Barbara High lowered his ERA in WSC play to 1.71.
 SBCC took a 3-1 lead in the sixth when Epperson tripled and scored on a two-strike single by Brandon Laubhan. Zehner hit his second homer in the eighth on a two-strike, two-out pitch that extended the lead to 5-2.
 The Vaqueros will host Ventura on Saturday. The start time has been moved back to 2:30 p.m.

SBCC ............ 100 101 020 -- 5  10  3
Ventura ....... 100 001 000 -- 2    7  0
 Shoemake, Benenati (7) and Dinges; Babola, Murray (9) and Burke. W--Shoemake 6-4. L--Babola 5-3. Save--Benenati 4.
 2B--V: Grattan. 3B--SB: Epperson. HR--SB: Zehner (2), 8th inn., one on.

Wednesday, April 4 -- SBCC at Riverside, 5 p.m.  #9 Riverside 8, SBCC 4  Record: 12-16

     Vaqueros fall at Riverside, 8-4
Tigers win rematch of last year's Regional playoff

 Riverside scored two runs in four different innings on Wednesday night and went on to beat visiting SBCC 8-4 in a nonconference game at the Evans Sports Complex.
 The Vaqueros (12-16) jumped ahead 1-0 in the first when Eli Michaels hit a leadoff triple and scored on a groundout by Joey Epperson. Riverside, ranked No. 9 in Southern Cal, improved to 14-13.
 SBCC beat Riverside 2-1 last year in a best-of-3 Regional playoff series in Santa Barbara.
 Left-hander Rich McCaffrey went the first 5 1/3 innings for the Vaqueros, giving up six runs (four earned) on nine hits. He struck out seven and walked one. He struck out the side in the second inning and fanned five in a row at one point.
 "McCaffrey pitched as well as anyone I've seen this year for the first four innings," said coach Jeff Walker. "For the first time in a few games, we made some errors that hurt us."
 Epperson and Zach Zehner both went 2-4 for the Vaqueros. Riverside catcher Brad Burcroff was 4-4 and scored four runs. Starting pitcher Blake Burrell improved to 5-0 by holding SBCC to two runs on four hits in the first six innings.
 The Vaqueros will take the next seven days off before resuming WSC North play at Ventura on April 12 at 2:30 p.m.

SBCC .............. 100 001 101 -- 4   7  3
Riverside ....... 002 202 02x -- 8 12  1
McCaffrey, Benenati (6) and Dinges; Burrell, Molina (7) and Burcroff. W--Burrell 5-0. L--McCaffrey 3-3. Save--Molina 3.
 2B--SB: Zehner, Laubhan. R: Gotta. 3B--SB: Michaels.

Tuesday, April 3 -- SBCC at Glendale, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 3, #5 Glendale 1  Record: 12-15

Vaqueros upset No. 5 Glendale, 3-1
Shoemake tosses 3-hit ball for six innings

 Brendon Shoemake, Danny Nieves and Shane Turner combined on a three-hitter Tuesday, leading SBCC past Glendale 3-1 in a nonconference game at Casey Stengel Field in Glendale.
 Shoemake (5-4) allowed an unearned run on three hits in 6.1 innings as the Vaqueros (12-15) snapped a three-game losing streak. Nieves threw two no-hit innings and Turner escaped a bases-loaded, no-out situation in the ninth to notch his third save.
 Glendale, ranked No. 5 in Southern Cal and the leader in the WSC South, fell to 18-9.
 The SBCC Vaqueros (both teams use the same nickname) went ahead 2-0 in the fifth on RBI singles by Brandon Laubhan and Mark Jebbia. In the eighth, Eli Michaels doubled and scored on Joey Epperson's sacrifice bunt to make it 3-1.
 Michaels doubled for the third straight game. The leadoff hitter has hit safely in six of the last seven games.

SBCC ............. 000 020 010 -- 3  6  1
Glendale ....... 000 010 000 -- 1  3  3
 Shoemake, Nieves (7), Turner (9) and Eaton; Monarrez, Delzell (6), Kim (9) and Esparza, DeSantiago (8). W--Shoemake 5-4. L--Monarrez 1-2. Save--Turner 3.
 2B--SB: Michaels.

Saturday, March 31 -- SBCC at Moorpark, 1 p.m.  Moorpark 4, SBCC 2  Records: 11-15, 5-7 WSC North

  Vaqueros drop third straight
They hold Moorpark to 4 hits in 4-2 loss

SBCC limited Moorpark to four hits on Saturday but two errors led to two unearned runs in a 4-2 WSC loss at Moorpark.
 It was the third straight loss for the Vaqueros (11-15, 5-7 WSC North), who collected six hits. Zach Mercer pitched a strong seven innings for the Raiders (12-15, 7-5), giving up just one run on four hits with five strikeouts.
 Joey Gonzalez's first-inning single was the only hit for SBCC in the first five innings. The Raiders turned 6-4-3 double plays to end the second and third innings.
 "Mercer threw well and they followed up with another good pitcher in (Michael) Coates," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We're not playing bad, we're just not hitting the ball right now."
 Moorpark took a 1-0 lead in the first on a single, an infield error and a double play that scored Nick Rogowski. The Vaqueros tied it in the sixth on a double by Eli Michaels and a two-out single by Joey Epperson.
 The Raiders went ahead 3-1 in the seventh. With runners on second and third, Martin Orozco laid down a squeeze bunt that scored Taylor Khanowitch. Aaron Martinez also scored on the play when SBCC starter Danny Nieves threw the ball past first base.
 SBCC pulled within 3-2 in the eighth when Brandon Laubhan led off with a triple and scored on a single by Jared Dinges. Moorpark got a run in the bottom of the inning after Shane Turner walked two and hit the next two batters.
 Santa Barbara will play a pair of nonconference games on Tuesday at Glendale and Wednesday at Riverside. Glendale is ranked No. 5 in Southern Cal and Riverside is No. 9.

SBCC .............. 000 001 010 -- 2  6  2
Moorpark ...... 100 000 21x -- 4  4  0
 Nieves, Benenati (7), Turner (8), Shoemake (8) and Dinges; Mercer, Coates (8) and Bishop. W--Mercer 3-2. L--Nieves 2-4. Save--Coates 2.
 2B--SB: Michaels. M: Bishop, Martinez. 3B--SB: Laubhan.

Thursday, March 29 -- SBCC at Moorpark, 2:30 p.m.  Moorpark 6, SBCC 3  Records: 11-14, 5-6

Vaqueros fall at Moorpark, 6-3
They get nine hits but timing is off

 Brady Conlon had two doubles and two RBIs on Thursday, leading Moorpark to a 6-3 win over SBCC.
 The Vaqueros (11-14, 5-6 WSC North) outhit the home team 9-6 but couldn't come up with timely hits. The Raiders (11-15, 6-5) moved into sole possession of second place in conference, one game ahead of SBCC and Ventura.
 Moorpark scored two in the fifth to stretch its lead to 5-1. The Vaqueros got RBI singles from Eli Michaels and Joey Epperson in the ninth to pull within 6-3. They had runners on first and third but Zach Mercer ended the game by getting a pair of groundouts.
 Kevin Brown earned the win by holding Santa Barbara to one run in six innings. On offense, the Vaqueros had zero strikeouts for the first time this year.
 "Their guy threw well," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We got hits but we needed timely hits."
 SBCC gets a rematch on Saturday at Moorpark, starting at 1 p.m.

SBCC .............. 000 010 002 -- 3  9  2
Moorpark ...... 000 320 01x -- 6  6  0
 McCaffrey, Benenati (6), Oshima (8), Turner (8) and Dinges; Brown, Coates (7), Overly (9), Mercer (9) and Bishop. W--Brown 3-2. L--McCaffrey 3-2. Save--Mercer 1.
 2B--SB: Michaels. M: Conlon 2.

Tuesday, March 27 -- SBCC at Oxnard, 2:30 p.m.  Oxnard 4, SBCC 0  Records: 11-13, 5-5

   Oxnard blanks Vaqueros 4-0
SBCC gets just 5 hits, suffers first shutout

 SBCC opened a six-game road trip on a down note Tuesday as the Vaqueros lost to Oxnard 4-0.
 Santa Barbara managed just four hits against three pitchers. It was the first shutout of the year for the Vaqueros (11-13, 5-5), who remained tied for second in the WSC North with Ventura and Moorpark. Cuesta is first at 9-1 at the midpoint of the conference race.
 SBCC had scored 31 runs in its previous three games. Oxnard jumped ahead 2-0 in the first inning against Brendon Shoemake.
 "We loaded the bases in the first and couldn't score," said coach Jeff Walker. "We just couldn't get timely hits."
 Matt Lloyd went 2-for-3 for the Vaqueros and has two hits in each of the last three games. Shoemake allowed four runs on four hits in 4.2 innings. He struck out eight and walked three.
 Casey Rodriguez (5 innings, 2 hits), Daniel Lerma and Cody Curz combined on the shutout for the Condors (8-15, 3-7).
 "They had a couple of hard throwers," said Walker. "There were about 10 (pro) scouts watching the last guy and he was throwing 93 and 95 mph."
 SBCC plays the next two at Moorpark on Thursday (2:30 p.m.) and Saturday (1 p.m.).

SBCC ........... 000 000 000 -- 0   5   1
Oxnard ........ 200 020 00x -- 4   6   1
Shoemake, Nieves (5), Oshima (6) and Eaton; Rodriguez, Lerma (6), Curz (9) and Griffith. W--Rodriguez 2-3. L--Shoemake 4-4.
2B--SB: Lloyd. O: Minjares.

Saturday, March 24 -- Oxnard at SBCC, 1 p.m.  SBCC 9, Oxnard 4  Records: 11-12, 5-4 (tie for 2nd, WSC North)

    Benenati sparkles in relief
He holds Oxnard to one run in 9-4 victory

Lucas Benenati Lucas Benenati gave SBCC just what it needed on Saturday when the Vaqueros played their third game in as many days. The 6-3 freshman right-hander from Santa Barbara High tossed 6 2/3 innings of 1-run ball in a 9-4 victory over Oxnard at Pershing Park.
 The Vaqueros (11-12, 5-4) won their second straight to move into a three-way tie for second in the WSC North. Cuesta leads at 7-1, followed by SBCC, Ventura and Moorpark at 5-4.
 Stephen Foote started for Santa Barbara and gave up a leadoff homer to Westley Wright. The Condors (7-15, 2-7) had a 3-1 lead when Benenati came on with two outs in the second inning. Catcher Colin Eaton threw out a runner trying to steal and Benenati fanned Jordan Yallen to end the inning.
 "I just threw strikes," said Benenati. "I was trying to throw competitive strikes, make them chase and get ground balls. Let the defense work for me."
 Benenati (1-1) held Oxnard to one unearned run on two hits to earn his first collegiate win. Eleven of his 19 outs came on grounders. He struck out five and walked one, retiring the side in order in the third, sixth and eighth.
 "My fastball, slider and changeup were all working," said Benenati.
 The Vaqueros went ahead 4-3 with three runs in the bottom of the second.
 Matt Lloyd had an RBI single and Joey Gonzalez drove in two with a two-out single to left. The Vaqueros boosted the lead to 8-3 with four in the fourth. Eli Michaels (2-5, 2 runs) had an RBI single and Brandon Laubhan drove in two with a single to center.
 Michaels robbed Daniel Lerma of a home run leading off the second inning. He made a leaping grab in front of the temporary fence in left field and then tumbled through the 4-foot mesh netting.
"Lucas did a great job," said coach Jeff Walker. "We had a four-game week, so we were kind of going with Johnny Whole-staff. He came in, stopped them and let us take the lead.
 "That was a huge lift for us. He's pitched well all season."
 Shane Turner pitched the ninth inning and sandwiched two strikeouts around a walk. The game ended on a grounder to third baseman Mark Jebbia.
 Matt Lloyd went 2-4 for the Vaqueros, who've scored 31 runs over the last three days while going 2-1. They were 5-for-5 on stolen bases on Saturday.
 "Guys are swinging the bat well, we got some big two-out hits," said Walker. "Colin Eaton had a key two-out RBI hit in the seventh to kind of put them away. Guys are seeing the ball right now and hopefully, we'll continue that momentum."
 SBCC starts a six-game road trip on Tuesday with a 2:30 p.m. game at Oxnard.

Oxnard ........ 210 010 000 -- 4  6  4
SBCC ........... 130 400 10x -- 9  9  1
 Conard, Grajeda (2), Navarro (4), Diaz (8) and Lerma; Foote, Benenati (2), Turner (9) and Eaton. W--Benenati 1-1. L--Conard 0-4.
 2B--SB: Epperson. HR--O: Wright (3), 1st inn., none on.

Friday, March 23 -- SBCC at Hancock, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 14, Hancock 8  Records: 10-12, 4-4

     Zehner sparks 14-8 win
Vaqueros collect 6 doubles vs. Hancock

 Zach Zehner went 2-4 and hit his first homer on Friday, leading SBCC to a 14-8 victory over Hancock in Santa Maria.
 The freshman right fielder had a two-run homer in the third and a run-scoring double in the fourth as the Vaqueros (10-12, 4-4 WSC) jumped out to a 12-0 lead. He had three RBIs and scored three runs as did Steven Reveles, who went 2-3.
 Seth Spears had a two-run homer for Hancock (5-16, 2-6).
 Danny Nieves (2-3) got the win by going seven innings. He gave up six runs on eight hits with two strikeouts and six walks. The left-hander held the Bulldogs to one hit in the first four innings.
 "This was a nice bounce-back win after a tough loss on Thursday," said coach Jeff Walker. "It was nice to see Zach hit his first homer. This was the first time all year that Danny has gotten run support."
 The Vaqueros had a season-high 14 runs and tied their season best with 14 hits, including six doubles. Every hitter in the lineup had at least one hit. Catcher Colin Eaton was 3-for-5.
 SBCC scored five runs in the third and six in the fourth. Joey Epperson had a two-run double in the third. In the fourth, Eli Michaels had an RBI single, then four straight Vaqueros rapped doubles -- Laubhan, Reveles, Zehner and Mark Jebbia.
 Laubhan's seventh double of the year drove in two runs, extending the lead to 8-0.
 The Vaqueros will play their third game in as many days on Saturday when they host Oxnard at 1 p.m.

SBCC ............. 015 602 000 -- 14  14  1
Hancock ....... 000 040 040 --   8    9  4
 Nieves, Brenna (8), Perez (8) and Eaton; Hernandez, Thomas (4), St. Laurent (4), Dunsmore (9) and Mallory. W--Nieves 2-3. L--Hernandez 0-2.
 2B--SB: Epperson, Laubhan, Reveles, Zehner, Jebbia, Gonzalez. H: Cano, Mallory, Muhlethaler, Catibayan. 3B--H: Cano. HR--SB: Zehner (1), 4th inn., one on. H: Spears (1), 8th inn., one on.

Thursday, March 22 -- Cuesta at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  Cuesta 10, SBCC 8 (11 inns.)  Records: 9-12, 3-4

     Cuesta rallies past Vaqueros
SBCC ties it with 3 in 10th, falls 10-8 in 11 innings

 SBCC couldn't hold a one-run lead in the ninth and Cuesta couldn't maintain a three-run lead in the 10th. It was that kind of day on Thursday as the Cougars outlasted the Vaqueros 10-8 in 11 innings in a WSC North game at Pershing Park.
 The game lasted nearly 4 1/2 hours and the teams combined for 18 runs, 24 hits, 11 errors, 19 strikeouts and 18 walks.
 Josh Miller had three hits for the first-place Cougars, who are ranked No. 2 in Southern California. Brett Haringa, who pitched the last three innings for the victory, got two RBIs on a pair of bases-loaded walks. Chris Lindmark was 2-4 and drove in two runs.
 Cuesta (17-3, 7-0 WSC North) won its 17th straight game in spite of seven errors. The Cougars scored three in the 10th and two in the 11th. Four of those five runs were unearned.
 Lindmark's infield single brought in Labronze Sanderson to make it 10-9 with two outs in the top of the 11th. Cuesta tallied its final run on a bases-loaded walk to Haringa.
 The Vaqueros (9-12, 3-4) took a 5-4 lead in the seventh when Joey Epperson scored on Zach Zehner's fielder's choice with the bases loaded. The Cougars got Steven Reveles on a forceout for the second out but couldn't get Zehner at first.
 Reveles went 4-for-6, raising his batting average to .338. Mark Jebbia, Eli Michaels and Joey Gonzalez all had two hits. Gonzalez drove in two runs and Michaels scored three times.
 "We played well and we battled back," said first-year SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "More things went their way. We came back with three in the 10th and had the winning run 90 feet away but couldn't score.
 "Then we made a couple mistakes in the 11th and allowed them to get two more runs. I thought our pitchers threw well. We just didn't come up with the routine plays we needed to at the end."
 Rich McCaffrey went the first 4 2/3 for the Vaqueros, giving up four runs on five hits with seven strikeouts and four walks. Lucas Benenati pitched 3 1/3 innings of scoreless relief, allowing three hits and fanning five.
 Four Vaquero pitchers struck out 14 but they also walked 13 and hit two batters.
 Brandon Laubhan made an outstanding play in center field to end the eighth inning. With two runners on and the score tied 5-5, Josh Miller singled to center and Laubhan fired a one-hop bullet to catcher Jared Dinges, who held onto the ball after getting leveled by pinch-runner Gavin Susca.
 "We competed and it was a good bounce-back effort from Tuesday," added Walker. "Cuesta is on a roll where the bounces seem to be going their way. But we'll see them two more times this year."
 The Vaqueros travel to Hancock on Friday at 2:30 p.m., then host Oxnard on Saturday at 1 p.m.

(11 innings)
Cuesta ....... 202 000 001 32 -- 10  11  7
SBCC .......... 112 000 100 30 --   8  13  4
 Aprato, Nelson (5), Haringa (9) and Nieporte; McCaffrey, Benenati (5), Turner (9), Oshima (10) and Dinges, Eaton (9). W--Haringa 3-0. L--Oshima 0-2.
 2B--C: Miller 2, Nieporte. SB: Jebbia, Gonzalez, Laubhan, Michaels.

Tuesday, March 20 -- SBCC at Cuesta, 2:30 p.m.  #2 Cuesta 8, SBCC 1  Records: 9-11, 3-3 WSC North

    Cuesta stymies Vaqueros 8-1
SBCC gets just 5 hits; Cougars win 16th straight

Right-hander David Murillo held SBCC to one unearned run on five hits on Tuesday, leading first-place Cuesta to an 8-1 WSC win over the Vaqueros in San Luis Obispo.
 The Cougars (16-3, 6-0 WSC), ranked No. 2 in Southern California, extended their win streak to 16 games. Joey Gonzalez went 2-3 for the Vaqueros (9-11, 3-3) and Joey Epperson extended his hitting streak to eight games.
 Gonzalez, Brandon Laubhan and Pat Cavalier had doubles for SBCC, which entered the game tied for second in the WSC North. The Vaqueros got their only run in the eighth when Gonzalez was hit by a pitch and scored on an infield error.
 Murillo went eight innings, striking out six with two walks. Cuesta leads the WSC in team ERA at 2.73. SBCC starter Brendon Shoemake lasted only two innings, giving up five runs on four hits with three first-inning walks.
 Right fielder Cody Lavalli was 3-for-5 for the Cougars with two doubles and a three-run homer in the first. He drove in four runs.
 Cuesta led 6-0 after three innings.
 "They're a good team that hasn't lost since early February," said coach Jeff Walker. "We didn't have our 'A game' today."
 The Vaqueros will play three games in three days, starting Thursday when they host Cuesta at 2:30 p.m.

SBCC ......... 000 000 010 -- 1   5   4
Cuesta ...... 321 002 00x -- 8   8   2
 Shoemake, Foote (3), Oshima (6), Nieves (8) and Dinges, Eaton (  ). Murillo, Nelson (9) and Nieporte. W--Murillo 4-1. L--Shoemake 4-3.
 2B--SB: Gonzalez, Laubhan, Cavalier. C: Detz, Lavalli. 3B--C: Miller. HR--C: Lavalli (2), 1st inn., two on.

Friday, March 16 -- Hancock at SBCC, 2:30 p.m.  SBCC 8, Hancock 7 (10 inns.)  Records: 9-10, 3-2

Gonzalez's walk-off hit lifts Vaqueros
  SBCC edges Hancock 8-7 in 10 innings

After more than three hours of baseball, Friday's WSC battle between SBCC and Hancock came down to a guessing game.
 With two runners on and one out in the 10th inning, Joey Gonzalez guessed right and stroked a walk-off RBI single, scoring catcher Jared Dinges and giving the Vaqueros an 8-7 victory at Pershing Park.
 "I was sitting on changeup but I knew he might throw a fastball away and if he did, I was going to take it the other way," said Gonzalez, a former Santa Barbara High standout after hitting an 0-2 pitch to right-center. "I got my pitch and stroked it.
 "We always fight back when we're down. There's no shot clock in baseball."
 With one out in the 10th, Dinges singled and took second on an error. Then Eli Michaels walked, setting the stage for Gonzalez.
 Joey Epperson was 3-4 for the Vaqueros (9-10, 3-2 WSC) while Dinges was 2-2 and scored three runs. River Stevens paced Hancock (5-13, 2-3) by going 3-5.
 Gonzalez, Zach Zehner and Steven Reveles all had two hits for the Vaqueros, who posted a season-high 14 hits.
 Rich McCaffrey went the first six innings for the Vaqueros, giving up three runs (two earned) on seven hits. He struck out eight and walked three. Shane Turner (1-1) pitched one-hit ball for the last three innings to earn his first victory.
 After falling behind 2-0 in the first inning, SBCC rallied and took a 6-3 lead with three runs in the sixth. Mark Jebbia had an RBI groundout, Dinges drove a sacrifice fly to right and Eli Michaels delivered a run-scoring single.
 Hancock responded with four in the seventh to go ahead 7-6. The Vaqueros tied it in the bottom of the inning on an RBI single by Zehner.
 "We did a lot of positive things that we haven't done in a while," said coach Jeff Walker. "We did a good job of punching back after they took the lead. Our guys are tough and they played hard.
 "I was pleased with our offensive approach. The difference was we got timely hits."
 The Vaqueros travel to Hancock on Saturday for a 1 p.m.

  (10 innings)
Hancock ....... 200 001 400 0 -- 7  14  4
SBCC ............. 101 013 100 1 -- 8  14  2
 One out when winning run scored.
 Bower, Borsum (6), Perez (7) and Mallory; McCaffrey, Benenati (7), Turner (8) and Dinges. W--Turner 1-1. L--Perez 1-3.
 2B--H: Cano, Mallory.

Tuesday, March 13 -- SBCC at Ventura, 2:30 p.m.  Ventura 4, SBCC 2  Records: 8-10, 2-2

Ventura tops Vaqueros 4-2
 Zehner collects three doubles

 Dustin Babola outdueled SBCC's Brendon Shoemake on Tuesday and Ventura used a pair of seventh-inning runs to beat the visiting Vaqueros 4-2 in a WSC North game.
 Babola held the Vaqueros (8-10, 2-2) to two runs on eight hits over eight innings. He struck out eight and walked three. Shoemake limited the Pirates (11-7, 2-2) to four runs (two earned) on eight hits in seven innings. He fanned six and walked three.
 Right fielder Zach Zehner went 3-4 with three doubles for Santa Barbara. He's 12th in the state with eight doubles. Joey Epperson had a run-scoring groundout in the first and Zehner drove in Epperson with a two-out double in the third, tying the game at 2.
 Ventura took the lead on four straight singles with two outs in the seventh. Matthew Burke and Eric Contreras had RBI singles.
 Zehner doubled to lead off the Santa Barbara ninth and Scott Zeman moved from shortstop to pitcher. Zeman got a groundout, strikeout and flyout to record his fourth save.
 Santa Barbara was 2-14 with runners in scoring position.
 "Shoemake threw well but their guy made pitches when he had to," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We had a lot of guys on base. We have to get more timely hits."
 The Vaqueros host Hancock on Friday at 2:30 p.m.

SBCC ............. 101 000 000 -- 2  8  2
Ventura ........ 110 000 20x -- 4  8  2
 Shoemake, Benenati (8) and Dinges; Babola, Zeman (9) and Burke. W--Babola 3-1. L--Shoemake 4-2. Save--Zeman 4.
 2B--SB: Zehner 3.

Saturday, March 10 -- Ventura at SBCC, 2 p.m.  Ventura 5, SBCC 4  Records: 8-9, 2-1

  Vaquero rally falls short, 5-4
Grattan's ninth-inning homer lifts Ventura

 It took SBCC's offense a long time to get going on Saturday at Pershing Park and the Vaqueros came up one run short in a 5-4 WSC North loss to Ventura.
 Dewey Grattan went 4-5 for the Pirates (10-7, 1-2) and his ninth-inning solo homer proved to be the difference.
 Ventura grabbed an early 4-0 lead on a two-run single by Scott Zeman in the first, Tim Ginther's RBI single in the second and a solo homer by Eric Contreras in the third.
 The Vaqueros (8-9, 2-1) got on the board in the fifth when Eli Michaels doubled down the right-field line to score Zach Zehner. That was one of only two hits the Vaqueros got off left-hander Dennis Doherty in the first seven innings.
 "He's a soft left-handed pitcher and we've struggled with that all year but so has everybody since the beginning of time," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "We have to do a better job of making adjustments.
"We had a fly ball that should have been caught in the first inning. Instead of them going up 2-0, it would have been 0-0 with us coming to the plate. We battled back and competed and (Danny) Nieves threw very well for us."
 Doherty gave up three runs on four hits with six walks and one strikeout. Nieves, a sophomore left-hander, allowed four runs on seven hits in 7 2/3 innings, walking two and striking out one. He also hit four batters, including three in the first two innings.
 Epperson was 2-5 for the Vaqueros, who finished with six hits. They cut the deficit to 4-3 with two runs in the eighth. Joey Gonzalez reached on a bunt single, stole second and scored on Epperson's triple down the right-field line. Epperson came home on a wild pitch, which was also ball four to Brandon Laubhan.
 Jacob Murray replaced Doherty on the mound. Laubhan reached third with one out but the inning ended on a groundout and flyout. In the ninth, Jared Dinges had an RBI single and Eli Michaels reached second base with two outs. But Zeman, who pitched the ninth inning, struck out Epperson on a 2-2 count.
 "If we made better decisions on defense, those two homers might have been the only two runs they scored," said Walker. "But we won the week, going 2-1, which was our goal."
  After playing eight of their last 10 at home, the Vaqueros hit the road for nine of their next 12. They'll travel to Ventura on Tuesday for a 2:30 p.m. contest.

Ventura ...... 211 000 001 --  5   8   0
SBCC ........... 000 010 021 --  4   6   2
 Doherty, Murray (8), Zeman (9) and Burke; Nieves, Turner (8) and Dinges. W--Doherty 1-1. L--Nieves 1-3. Save--Zeman 3.
 2B--SB: Michaels (3). 3B--V: Grattan (3). SB: Epperson (1), Cavalier (1). HR--V: Contreras (2), 3rd inn., none on; Grattan (3), 9th inn., none on.

Thursday, March 8 -- Moorpark at SBCC, 2 p.m.  SBCC 10, Moorpark 7  Records: 8-8, 2-0

     Seven-run third fuels 10-7 win
Epperson drives in 3 in 2nd straight win over Moorpark

 SBCC used a seven-run third inning to erase a 6-2 deficit on Thursday and went on to beat Moorpark 10-7 in a WSC North game at Pershing Park.
 The Vaqueros (8-8, 2-0) sent 11 men to the plate in the third, scoring seven runs on just two hits. Three Moorpark pitchers issued four walks and hit three batters in the inning.
 Zach Zehner had a two-run triple in the third and Joey Epperson capped the uprising with a two-run double. All the runs came with two outs.
 Sophomore left-hander Rich McCaffrey (3-1) gave up five runs in the third on three singles and three walks. He got the victory on an off day, allowing six runs (four earned) on four hits in 5 2/3 innings with seven strikeouts, six walks and a hit batter.
 "We had that one sideways inning, which we try to avoid," said Epperson, who drove in three runs. "When we've fallen behind this year, we've done a good job of coming back. Guys kept getting on base and we scored a lot of runs."
 Raider reliever Daniel Hawes entered with a 6-5 lead and the bases loaded in the third. He walked Eli Michaels, the only batter he faced, to force in Tyler Sharpe. Michael Coates relieved Hawes and hit Joey Gonzalez with the first pitch, putting the Vaqueros ahead 7-6.
 Lucas Benenati tossed one-run ball over the final 3 1/3 frames and struck out four to earn his third save.
 Five Moorpark pitchers gave the Vaqueros 14 free passes on eight walks and six hit batters. Leadoff hitter Eli Michaels (3 walks) and Epperson both reached base four times.
 "We're a tough team to throw to," Epperson noted. "We don't get out of the way, we take doses and we get walks. That's frustrating for other teams. The bats will come and go but if you can stay consistent getting on base, it's a good way to score a lot of runs."
 Steven Reveles was 2-5 with two RBIs.
 The Vaqueros committed two errors in the top of the first, then took a 2-1 lead in the bottom half on a two-run double to left-center by Reveles. He leads the team with 17 RBIs.
 "We did a good job of coming back," said coach Jeff Walker. "We were patient at the plate and their guy struggled. McCaffrey didn't have his 'A stuff' but he did a good job of getting into the sixth inning. Then Lucas came in and threw strikes."
 The Vaqueros will play their eighth home game in the last 10 on Saturday when they host Ventura at 1 p.m.

Moorpark .....  105 000 001 --   7  7  1
SBCC .............. 207 010 00x -- 10  8  4
 Mercer, Hawes (3), Coates (3), Eaves (6), Domke (8) and Bishop; McCaffrey, Benenati (6) and Eaton. W--McCaffrey 3-1. L--Coates 0-5. Save--Benenati 3.
 2B--SB: Reveles, Epperson, Eaton, Cavalier. 3B--SB: Zehner.

Tuesday, March 6 -- Moorpark at SBCC, 2 p.m.  SBCC 6, Moorpark 2  Records: 7-8, 1-0

 Shoemake is sharp in 6-2 win
Michaels scores 3 runs in WSC opener

 Neither howling winds nor a rocky start could hinder Brendon Shoemake on Tuesday as the SBCC right-hander pitched eight strong innings in a 6-2 win over Moorpark at Pershing Park.
 It was the first WSC North game of the year for the Vaqueros (7-8, 1-0), who are the defending conference champs.
 "The wind was blowing really hard, I even fell over a few times," said Shoemake. "After the first two innings, I didn't think they could hit me."
 The Vaqueros fell behind 2-1 on a pair of mental errors in the first two innings.
 Shoemake limited the Raiders (5-11) to two runs on seven singles over eight innings. He struck out 10 and walked two.
 Shoemake fanned five in a row at one point, including striking out the side in the sixth.
 Leadoff hitter Eli Michaels went 2-3 with two stolen bases and three runs. Steven Reveles was 2-4 and scored twice, including an alert dash home in the sixth after a wild pitch caromed about seven feet to the right of home plate.
 "This is the windiest I've ever seen it at our ball park," said Michaels, a sophomore left fielder from Torrington, Conn. "We were trying to make things happen on the bases."
 In the fifth, Michaels was hit by a pitch, stole second, went to third on a groundout and scored on a wild pitch. That put the Vaqueros ahead to stay, 3-2. Brandon Laubhan had an RBI fielder's choice in the first and drove in Joey Gonzalez with a single to right in the seventh.
 "It's one win in a 20-game conference season, so we're not going to get our pom-poms out too early," said coach Jeff Walker. "We came out a little slow and tentative. Brendon turned in a dominating pitching performance.
 "In conditions like this, you have to keep the ball out of the air. The difference in the game was the way we ran the bases. We had a couple of good ball-in-dirt reads, stole some bases and put pressure on them defensively."

Moorpark .....  110 000 000 -- 2   7   0
SBCC .............. 100 111 20x -- 6   8   1
 Brown, Coats (7), Hawes (8) and Bishop; Shoemake, Turner (9) and Dinges. W--Shoemake 4-1. L--Brown 1-1.

Thursday, March 1 -- El Camino at SBCC, 2 p.m.  El Camino 7, SBCC 2  Record: 6-8

Vaquero bats are quiet in 7-2 loss
El Camino holds them to six singles

SBCC managed just six singles on Thursday in a 7-2 loss to El Camino at Pershing Park.
 The Vaqueros fell to 6-8 while the Warriors improved to 11-2 with their second win over Santa Barbara in three days. Center fielder Ronnie Galosic went 4-4 with a homer and a double to lead El Camino's 15-hit attack.
 Pat Cavalier had two hits for the Vaqueros, who left 10 runners on base.
 "Their pitcher threw well and El Camino is a good team," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "They don't make mistakes."
 Alex Mistuloff (4-0) got the win, limiting the Vaqueros to two runs on six hits with five strikeouts and three walks. Rich McCaffrey (2-1) suffered his first loss, after giving up five earned runs in seven innings. He struck out four and walked one.
 "I thought Rich threw very well and didn't get rewarded," Walker noted. "If he pitches like that in conference, we're going to win a lot of games.
"We have some work to do on offense. We had a lot of quality at-bats, we just didn't string enough of them together."
 SBCC tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the first. Joey Gonzalez and Joey Epperson scored on an error and a wild pitch. After that, the Vaqueros didn't get two runners on until the sixth when Zach Zehner singled and Mark Jebbia was hit by a pitch. Cavalier grounded into a double play, ending the threat.
 The Vaqueros open defense of their WSC North title on Tuesday when they host Moorpark at 2 p.m.

El Camino .....  202 100 110 -- 7 15  1
SBCC ............... 200 000 000 -- 2   6  1
 Mistuloff, Simpson (8), Nelson (9) and McCullough; McCaffrey, Benenati (8), Turner (9) and Eaton. W--Mistuloff 4-0. L--McCaffrey 2-1.
 2B--EC: Galosic. HR--EC: Galosic (2), 3rd inn., none on.

Tuesday, Feb. 28 -- SBCC at El Camino, 2 p.m.  El Camino 17, SBCC 4  Record: 6-7

El Camino downs Vaqueros 17-4
SBCC allows 18 hits; Zehner goes 3-4

 El Camino piled up 18 hits in a 17-4 nonconference win over SBCC on Tuesday in Torrance. The Warriors (10-2) took advantage of five errors by the Vaqueros (6-7) to score nine unearned runs.
 El Camino has won its last three games by a combined 44-9.
 "We didn't play very well against a hot team," said SBCC coach Jeff Walker. "They busted it open in the sixth."
 Zach Zehner went 3-4 for the Vaqueros while Brandon Laubhan and Joey Epperson had two hits apiece. Joey Gonzalez had a two-run double during a three-run seventh inning. Epperson also had two RBIs.
 The Warriors broke open a 3-0 game with seven runs in the sixth. Only one run was earned.
 Brendon Shoemake (3-1) went the first 5 1/3 innings for SBCC and suffered his first loss, giving up eight runs (three earned) on nine hits with four walks and two strikeouts.
 Rafael Ramirez got the win, holding the Vaqueros to no runs on six hits over six innings.
 Shortstop Steven Reveles, the Vaqueros top hitter at .357, didn't play due to injury.

 The Vaqueros get a chance for revenge on Thursday when El Camino comes to Pershing Park for a 2 p.m. contest.

SBCC .................  000 000 301 --   4  10  5
El Camino ......... 102 007 25x -- 17  18  3
 Shoemake, Foote (6), Perez (8), Oshima (8) and Dinges; Ramirez, Brach (7), Heredia (7), Wessel (9) and Flores. W--Ramirez 3-0. L--Shoemake 3-1.
 2B--SB: Zehner, Gonzalez. EC: Ives, Issac, Trezak, Galosic. 3B--EC: Savage.

Friday, Feb. 24 -- Irvine Valley at SBCC, 2 p.m.  SBCC 11, Irvine Valley 6  Record: 6-6

  Reveles, Nieves shine in 11-6 victory
Shortstop belts grand slam; pitcher shuts down Irvine

 It didn't take long for SBCC to jump ahead in Friday's game with Irvine Valley as Steven Reveles blasted a grand slam in the first inning. The Vaqueros built a 9-1 lead after five frames on the way to an 11-6 nonconference win at Pershing Park.
 Reveles, a freshman shortstop from Dos Pueblos High, has seven RBIs in the last two days. SBCC (6-6) loaded the bases in the first inning on a single by Eli Michaels, a walk to Joey Epperson and an error on a grounder. Reveles drilled his first homer to center field, extending his hitting streak to eight games.
 "It's always important to score early when you're playing a good team," said Reveles, who's hitting .357. "I was looking for a pitch to drive and I got one.
 "I've been seeing the ball really well and trying to stay middle-up in my approach. It's been working out well."
 Left-hander Danny Nieves turned in a solid seven innings, holding the visitors to two runs on six hits. He struck out six and walked three.
 Michaels, the Vaqueros' leadoff hitter, went 3-4 with three runs. His 15 runs are the second-most in California.
 After hitting just one home run in their first 11 games, the Vaqueros had two on Friday to go along with two doubles and two triples. Third baseman Pat Cavalier had an RBI single in a four-run fourth and a towering solo homer down the right-field line in the fifth.
 "We swung the bats well," said coach Jeff Walker. "We got our hottest hitter, Reveles, to the plate with the bases loaded and he came through. Up and down the lineup, we hit the ball the best we have all season."
 Santa Barbara scored a season-high 11 runs on 11 hits. "And we only struck out three times," Walker added, followed by an emphatic, "Yeah!"
 SBCC didn't commit a single error in its two-game series with the Lasers (5-7). Irvine had four errors on Friday, leading to five unearned runs for the Vaqueros.
 Irvine pulled within three, 9-6, after Brian Glynn hit a pinch-hit three-run homer off Stephen Brenna in the eighth. Lucas Benenati got the last out of the inning and then struck out the last two batters in the ninth to notch his second save.
 Catcher Matt Balliet led the Lasers by going 2-4 with two doubles and two RBIs.
 The Vaqueros travel to Torrance to face El Camino on Tuesday.

Irvine Valley ........ 001 001 040 --   6    8  4
SBCC ..................... 400 410 02x -- 11  11  0
 Perez, Euler (5) and Balliet; Nieves, Brenna (8), Benenati (8) and Dinges. W--Nieves 1-2. L--Perez 0-3. Save--Benenati 2.
 2B--IV: Guite, Balliet 2. SB: Zehner, Michaels. 3B--SB: Laubhan, Michaels. HR--IV: Glynn (1), 8th inn., two on. SB: Reveles (1), 1st inn., three on; Cavalier (1), 5th inn., none on.

Thursday, Feb. 23 -- SBCC at Irvine Valley, 2 p.m.  SBCC 4, Irvine Valley 3  Record: 5-6

       Reveles sparks 4-3 road win
Shortstop drives in 3; McCaffrey throws 7 strong innings

 Steven Reveles was 2-4 with three RBIs on Thursday, guiding SBCC to a 4-3 baseball win at Irvine Valley.
 The freshman shortstop from Dos Pueblos High drove in a run in a two-run first inning and two more with a one-out triple in the sixth that extended the lead to 4-0. Reveles, who leads the Vaqueros (5-6) in batting at .368, extended his hitting streak to seven games. He's No. 1 in the state with three triples.
 Left-hander Rich McCaffrey (2-0) pitched seven solid innings, holding the Lasers (5-6) to one run on six hits with six strikeouts and two walks. With two outs in the eighth, Shane Turner came on with a runner on second and induced a groundout to short. Irvine also got a runner to second in the ninth before Turner recorded a groundout and strikeout for his second save.
Danny Jimenez was 4-4 and drove in all three runs for Irvine Valley, which committed four errors leading to three unearned runs.
 Joey Gonzalez and Brandon Laubhan each scored twice for the Vaqueros, who didn't commit an error. One day earlier, they had six errors in a 7-6 loss to L.A. Pierce.
 "McCaffrey threw seven strong innings and Shane came on in the eighth and ninth and did his job," said coach Jeff Walker. "The difference was we made no errors today."
 The Vaqueros will play their third game in three days on Friday when Irvine Valley comes to Pershing Park for a rematch at 2 p.m.

SBCC .................. 200 002 000 -- 4   6  0
Irvine Valley ..... 000 001 020 -- 3 10  4
 McCaffrey, Foote (8), Turner (8) and Dinges; Dunleavy, Euler (8) and Wagner, Balliet (9). W--McCaffrey 2-0. L--Dunleavy 1-3. Save--Turner 2.
 2B--IVC: Jimenez 2, Hara. 3B--SB: Reveles.

Wednesday, Feb. 22 -- L.A. Pierce at SBCC, 2 p.m.  Pierce 7, SBCC 6 (10 inn.)  Record: 4-6

    Pierce outlasts Vaqueros 7-6
Epperson has four hits; Laubhan drives in three

 Joey Epperson went 4-for-5 with two doubles on Wednesday but SBCC couldn’t overcome six errors and six walks in a 7-6, 10-inning loss to L.A. Pierce at Pershing Park.
 “This was a hard loss but fortunately we have two more games this week,” said Epperson, a sophomore first baseman from Orinda, Calif. “We’re making mistakes and we’re a team that doesn’t make mistakes. … We’re walking guys and making errors but we’re going to get better.”
 Brandon Laubhan was 2-4 with three RBIs for the Vaqueros (4-6), who dropped their second straight one-run game.
 Santa Barbara jumped ahead 2-0 on Laubhan’s two-run double down the right-field line in the first. The Brahmas (3-7) scored in three straight innings and took a 6-3 lead in the top of the sixth.
 Mark Jebbia started the Vaquero comeback with an RBI single in the sixth. Epperson doubled and scored on Zach Zehner’s single to cut the deficit to 6-5 in the seventh. Jebbia and Steven Reveles had two hits apiece.
 In the bottom of the ninth, Joey Gonzalez singled with one out and Laubhan delivered a clutch two-out RBI single to tie it at 6-6. SBCC closer Shane Turner came on to start the 10th and gave up two walks and a run-scoring double to Matt Sanchez.
 Pat Cavalier walked to start the SBCC 10th and went to second on a sacrifice bunt. Matt Lloyd pinch-ran for him but was left at second when Jared Dinges flied to left and Jebbia struck out looking.
 The Vaqueros committed six errors, leading to four unearned runs. Brendon Shoemake pitched the first 4 1/3 innings, allowing five runs (one earned) on four hits with five strikeouts and four walks.
 Lucas Benenati, a freshman from Santa Barbara High, held the visitors to one run on four hits over 4 2/3 innings, striking out six and walking none.
 “That’s the first time all year that our defense hasn’t played catch,” said coach Jeff Walker. “Shoemake was short-rested by a day and didn’t have his ‘A stuff’ but pitched well enough to keep us in the game.
“Lucas gave us a big pick-me-up. We were down by two and he kept us in it and allowed us to battle back and tie it in the ninth.”
 Three SBCC pitchers combined for 13 strikeouts. Shoemake got all five of his strikeouts with the batter looking at strike 3. Benenati fanned five in a row at one point.
 “We had a lot of good individual performances but too many negative individual performances,” Walked added. “We have to a better job of playing together as a team.”
 The Vaqueros will play Irvine Valley in a two-game series, starting Thursday in Irvine. The teams will clash again on Friday at Pershing, starting at 2 p.m.

  (10 innings)
L.A. Pierce ……. 000 321 000 1 -- 7  9  1
SBCC ………….... 200 101 101 0 -- 6 13 6
 Torres, Mackey (8), Pedicure (10) and Koll; Shoemake, Benenati (5), Turner (10) and Eaton, Dinges (9). W--Mackey 1-1. L--Turner 0-1. Save--Peddicord 2.
  2B--P: Hymes 2, Sanchez. SB: Epperson 2, Laubhan.

Saturday, Feb. 18 -- Canyons at SBCC, 1 p.m.  Canyons 6, SBCC 5  Record: 4-5

 Canyons edges Vaqueros 6-5
Zehner, Gonzalez drive in two runs each

 Canyons took the lead with three runs in the seventh on Saturday and went on to defeat SBCC 6-5 in a nonconference game at Pershing Park.
 The Vaqueros (4-5) were hurt by three errors and 12 strikeouts. Kevin Lenik's sacrifice fly won the game for the Cougars (5-2).
Rich McCaffrey pitched the first five innings for SBCC, allowing two runs (none earned) on five hits with three strikeouts. Danny Nieves (0-2) suffered the loss after giving up four runs (three earned) on four hits over three innings.
 Zach Zehner had two doubles and two RBIs for Santa Barbara. Joey Epperson had two hits and Joey Gonzalez drove in two runs. The Vaqueros took a 5-3 lead with three runs in the sixth on a two-run double by Zehner and a sacrifice fly from Gonzalez.
 "We played well, we just made too many mistakes," said coach Jeff Walker. "Too many errors, too many walks. They executed and we didn't. We have to do a better job of bouncing back when they take the lead."
 SBCC will host L.A. Pierce on Wednesday at 2 p.m.

Canyons ....... 100 002 300 -- 6  10 1
SBCC .............. 000 113 000 -- 5   9  3
 Jones, Salas (6) and Sandler; McCaffrey, Nieves (6), Turner (9) and Eaton. W--Salas 2-0. L--Nieves 0-2.
 2B--C: Bonds. SB: Zehner 2, Epperson. 3B--SB: Reveles.

Thursday, Feb. 16 -- Victor Valley at SBCC, 2 p.m.  SBCC 7, Victor Valley 5  Record: 4-4

      Shoemake pitches a gem
Reveles has 3 RBIs; Vaqs hold on for 7-5 win

 Brendon Shoemake turned in his third straight solid pitching performance on Thursday, giving up just one run on three hits over eight innings and SBCC held on to beat Victor Valley 7-5 in a nonoonference game at Pershing Park.
 Shortstop Steven Reveles went 2-3 with three RBIs and turned in some slick fielding that led to a pair of double plays.
 "Everything was solid up until the ninth inning," said Reveles, a freshman from Dos Pueblos High who leads the team in batting at .364.. "We didn't have any errors and everything was going smoothly."
 Reveles had eight assists and second baseman Joey Gonzalez had four. Gonzalez and Mark Jebbia had two hits each and Colin Eaton drove in two runs.
 Santa Barbara (4-4) built a 5-1 lead on Jebbia's RBI double and Reveles' run-scoring single in the third. The Vaqueros extended the lead to 7-1 on an RBI triple by Reveles in the fifth and Eaton's RBI single to left in the eighth.
 Mitchell Oshima took the mound in the ninth and gave up three straight hits. He surrendered four runs but only one run was earned. Lucas Benenati entered with runners on first and second, two outs and his team ahead 7-3. He gave up a two-run double to Ronald Leon, then struck out Zack Bilsland to earn his first save.
 Shoemake, a 6-4 right-hander, struck out five and walked three while improving to 3-0 and lowering his ERA to 2.25.
 "I fell into some trouble early and the defense really helped me," said Shoemake. "I settled down in the fourth."

Victor Valley ........ 010 000 004 -- 5    7  3
SBCC ..................... 032 010 01x -- 7  10  1
 Montana, Strunk (4), Roark (7), Oliver (8) and Dilts, Dickinson (6); Shoemake, Oshima (9), Benenati (9) and Eaton. W--Shoemake 3-0. L--Montana 0-3. Save--Benenati 1.
 2B--VV: Dilts, Leon. SB: Jebbia. 3B--SB: Reveles.

Tuesday, Feb. 14 -- SBCC at L.A. Pierce, 2 p.m.  Pierce 12, SBCC 8  Record: 3-4

Vaqueros fall at Pierce, 12-8
 They can't overcome 13 walks

 After falling behind 9-0, SBCC rallied to within a run of L.A. Pierce on Tuesday afternoon before dropping a 12-8 nonconference game in Woodland Hills.
 The Vaqueros (3-4) trailed 9-0 after four innings. They scored two in the fifth and six in the sixth to shave the deficit to 9-8. Pierce (1-4), which competes in the WSC South, pulled away with three runs in the eighth.
 Stephen Foote, the first of five Vaquero hurlers, gave up six runs in two-plus innings. Santa Barbara issued 15 free passes -- 13 walks and two hit batters.
 "You can't give up 15 free bases and expect to win," said coach Jeff Walker. "That makes it tough on the defense."
 Pat Cavalier went 3-4 for the Vaqueros, who outhit the home team 9-7. Brandon Laubhan had a double and Eli Michaels tripled.
 The Vaqueros open a three-game homestand on Thursday with a 2 p.m. game against Victor Valley.

SBCC ................ 000 026 000 --   8  9  1
L.A. Pierce ...... 105 300 03x -- 12  7  0
Foote, Perez (3), Brenna (4), Renteria (7), Cook (8) and Dinges; Murphy, Terrazas (6), Mackey (6), Friedman (7), Peddicord (8) and Koll. W--Murphy 1-0. L--Foote 0-1. Save--Peddicord 1.
 2B--SB: Laubhan. P: Despain, Bobbs. 3B--SB: Michaels. P: Sanchez.
 Records--SB: 3-4. LAP: 1-4.

Saturday, Feb. 11 -- SBCC at Saddleback (2), noon & 3 p.m.  SBCC 9-2, Saddleback 4-6  Record: 3-3

  Vaqueros get split at Saddleback
Laubhan's 3-run triple in ninth secures 9-4 win

 Brandon Laubhan broke open a tight game with three-run triple in the ninth on Saturday, sending SBCC to a 9-4 win over Saddleback in the opener of a doubleheader in Mission Viejo.
 The Gauchos (3-2) took the nightcap 6-2, holding the Vaqueros (3-3) to five hits. SBCC took two of three in the three-game series.
 "When you win two of three from an Orange Empire team in their yard, that's a good thing," said coach Jeff Walker. "I was happy with our performance this weekend."
 Eli Michaels led off the first game with a triple and scored on a wild pitch. The sophomore outfielder went 2-4 with four runs scored, extending his hitting streak to five games.
 Pat Cavalier knocked in two runs with a sacrifice fly in the third and an RBI single in the fifth that stretched the lead to 4-1. Saddleback cut the deficit to 5-4 with a run in the eighth before the Vaqueros pulled away with four in the ninth.
 Laubhan had two hits and Steven Reveles produced two doubles.
 Left-hander Rich McCaffrey (1-0) went 6 1/3 innings for his first win, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
 In the second game, the Vaqueros fell behind 4-1 after three innings. Freshman Jared Dinges went 2-3 in his first start at catcher.

  First Game
SBCC .................. 101 110 014 -- 9  12  2
Saddleback ....... 100 000 210 -- 4  11  2
 McCaffrey, Benenati (7), Turner (9) and Eaton; Selecky, Tereschuk (7), Friedberg (8) and Ferret. W--McCaffrey 1-0. L--Selecky 0-1.
 2B--SB: Gonzalez, Reveles 2. S: Casas, Viera. 3B--SB: Michaels, Laubhan.

  Second Game
SBCC ................... 010 010 000 -- 2   5  3
Saddleback ........ 103 200 00x -- 6 10  2
 Nieves, Foote (7) and Dinges; Stubbs, Ham and Ferret. W--Stubbs 1-0. L--Nieves 0-1.
 2B--S: Fuentes, Casas, Baca.

Friday, Feb. 10 -- SBCC at Saddleback, 6 p.m.  SBCC 6, Saddleback 5  Record: 2-2

   Vaqueros edge Saddleback
They win 6-5 on Epperson's 2-run single

 Sophomore first baseman Joey Epperson went 2-2 with two RBIs on Friday night and SBCC took advantage of six Saddleback errors to beat the Gauchos 6-5 at Doug Fritz Field in Mission Viejo.
 Epperson put the Vaqueros (2-2) up 6-3 with a two-out, two-run single in the seventh that scored Taylor McKnight and Eli Michaels. The Gauchos (2-1) got single runs in the seventh and eighth. Epperson reached base in all five at-bats (2 hits, 2 walks, 1 HBP), raising his average to .429. 
 Michaels, the leadoff hitter, went 2-4 with three runs and extended his hitting streak to four games. Only two of the Vaqueros' runs were earned.
 Brendon Shoemake (2-0) got the win, allowing three runs on seven hits over six innings. He struck out three and walked six. Lucas Benenati pitched the seventh and eighth, giving up two runs (one earned) on two hits.
 Shane Turner earned his first save with a 1-2-3 ninth, striking out the last two batters.
 SBCC jumped ahead 4-0 after three innings. With a 3-0 lead, Epperson singled to lead off the third, stole second, went to third on an error and scored on a groundout by Steven Reveles.
 The teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday, starting at noon.

SBCC ............... 121 000  200 -- 6  7  2
Saddleback .... 000 300 110 -- 5  9  6
 Shoemake, Benenati (7), Turner (9) and Eaton; Manarino, Martin (5), Witt (7), Browne (7), Bass (9), Tereshuk (9) and Ferret. W--Shoemake 2-0. L--Manarino 1-1. Save--Turner 1.
 2B--SB: Cavalier, Zehner. S: Ferret. HR--S: Martin, 8th inn., none on.

Saturday, Feb. 4 -- Cabrillo at SBCC (DH), 11 a.m.  1st game: SBCC 5, Cabrillo 1 (7 inns.); 2nd game: Cabrillo 10, SBCC 9  Record: 1-2

Vaqueros split twinbill with Cabrillo
  Shoemake shines in 5-1 victory

 Brendon Shoemake turned in a masterful pitching performance in the opener on Saturday at Pershing Park, leading SBCC over Cabrillo 5-1 for its first baseball win of the season. In the second game, the Vaqueros rallied from an 8-1 deficit and took a 9-8 lead in the sixth before falling 10-9.
 Shoemake, a 6-4 freshman from La Canada High, didn't allow a hit in the first 4 2/3 innings. He limited the Seahawks to one run on three hits over six innings, striking out five and walking two. Shane Turner finished off the seven-inning victory with a scoreless final frame.
 "That was an outstanding effort by Shewmake playing in his first college game," said coach Jeff Walker. "He's going to be a good pitcher for us. Then Shane got in there and they didn't have a chance off him."
 In the second game, Eli Michaels went 2-for-4 with four RBIs for the Vaqueros (1-2), who fell behind 8-1 after four innings. SBCC scored four in the fifth and four in the sixth to grab a 9-8 lead. Joey Gonzalez's one-out single down the left-field line scored Michaels with the go-ahead run. Gonzalez also had a key two-run single that stretched SBCC's lead to 5-1 in the fifth inning of the opener.
 "It feels great to get our first win," said Michaels, a sophomore left-fielder. "It was tough to lose the second game. We're going to have a good year. The sky's the limit for this team."
 Kevin Hatch's leadoff homer in the eighth won it for the Seahawks (2-1).
 Michaels scored three runs while Steven Reveles and Colin Eaton had two hits apiece. Lucas Benenati, a freshman from Santa Barbara High, pitched well in relief. He gave up two runs on four hits over the last five innings with eight strikeouts and a walk.
 "We bounced back in the second game but fell a little bit short," said Walker. "Seeing us come back twice (in the 3-game series) was pretty exciting. We swung the bats very, very well."

  First Game (7 inn.)
Cabrillo ....... 000 010 0 -- 1  3  2
SBCC ............ 010 130 x -- 5  6  2
 Rodriguez, Murano (5), Settles (5) and Croft; Shoemake, Turner (7) and Eaton. W--Shoemake 1-0. L--Rodriguez 0-1.
 2B--C: Sanchez. SB: Sharpe, McKnight.

  Second Game
Cabrillo ....... 003 500 110 -- 10 12  3
SBCC ............ 100 044 000 --   9   8  1
 Toccalino, Nelson (5), Garcia (6), Settles (7), Rossetta (9) and Sanchez, Croft (9); Foote, Oshima (4), Benenati (5) and Eaton. W--Settles 1-0. L--Benenati 0-1. Save--Rossetta 1.
 2B--C: Horton, Sanchez, Augustine. SB: Michaels. HR--C: Hatch (2), 8th inn., none on.

Friay, Feb. 3 -- Cabrillo at SBCC, 2 p.m.  Cabrillo 12, SBCC 6  Record: 0-1

Video Highlights:

  Vaqueros drop opener 12-6
Epperson, Laubhan combine for 6 RBIs

 Joey Epperson and Brandon Laubhan combined for six hits and six RBIs on Friday but SBCC couldn't overcome a seven-run sixth inning in a 12-6 season-opening baseball loss to Cabrillo at Pershing Park.
 Epperson, a sophomore first baseman, went 3-for-5 with an RBI double in the fifth and a two-run homer in the ninth. Laubhan's two-out, two-run double in the fifth gave the Vaqueros their only lead at 4-3.
 Left-hander Rich McCaffrey started for SBCC, allowing three runs on four hits in five innings. He walked four and hit a batter.
 "There were a lot of things to build on," said coach Jeff Walker. "You look at the score but it was just a couple of things and one sideways inning. I thought Rich threw well. He didn't have his great stuff but he competed, he kept us in the game and he left with the lead."
 Mitch Oshima came on to start the sixth but lasted only six batters, allowing five runs on four hits. The big blow in the inning was a three-run double down the left-field line by Eric Vegas off Lucas Benenati.
 Three SBCC relievers gave up nine runs in four innings with five strikeouts, five walks and five wild pitches.
 "The bullpen let us down a little bit, giving up too many free passes," said Walker. "We didn't execute the right pitches and fell behind the hitters."
 SBCC was ranked No. 18 in the Southern Cal preseason poll while Cabrillo was No. 14 in the North.
 Steven Reveles, a freshman shortstop from Dos Pueblos High, went 2-3 and reached base in all four at-bats. The Vaqueros outhit the Seahawks 12-11 and neither team had an error.
 "We had a lot of guys playing their first college game," Walker noted. "We showed we can compete and swing the bats with anybody."

Cabrillo ....... 010 027 020 -- 12 11 0
SBCC ............ 010 030 002 --   6 12 0
 Carle, Genovese (6), Murano (7), Settles (8), Garcia (9) and Sanchez; McCaffrey, Oshima (6), Benenati (6), Perez (7) and Eaton, Dinges (8). W--Carle 1-0. L--Oshima 0-1.
2B--C: Horton, Hatch, Sanchez, Vegas, Rojko. SB: Epperson, Laubhan, Reveles. HR--C: Hatch (1), 5th inn., one on. SB: Epperson (1), 9th inn., one on.

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