The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Strong pitching helps City College baseball beat Oxnard

Vanessa Martinez
Patrick Caulfield earns the Vaqueros three hits in their game against Oxnard College on Saturday, April 14, at Pershing Park. The Vaqueros beat the Oxnard College Condors 11-2 in the ninth inning.

A great performance from a pitcher making only his second start helped the City College baseball team dominate Oxnard 11-2 Saturday at Pershing Park.

On a beautiful day in sunny Santa Barbara, the Vaqueros amassed 13 hits and scored 11 unanswered runs while being led by great pitching from Will Blackburn (No.28) in his second college start.

“I felt pretty good. I love trusting my defense,” Blackburn said. “I just went out there and tried to execute one pitch at a time. When the team scores runs it gives me a huge amount of confidence.”

Blackburn displayed his confidence all game, tossing seven innings while allowing two runs on nine hits. He struck out five batters and walked one while earning his first college win.

Story continues below advertisement

“Will is definitely one of our guys now,” said outfielder John Jensen (No.13). “He was given the opportunity to step up in the rotation and he’s definitely done that. The past few games he’s been throwing strikes and getting ground balls. He’s become a pitcher we can rely on now.”

Oxnard scored the first two runs of the game in the top of the third inning. Ramon Gomez of Oxnard hit a 2-run triple that gave the Condors their only lead of the game.

The Vaqueros answered with a bases loaded single from Jensen with two outs in the bottom of the third inning, tying the score 2-2.

“After that third inning I settled down and had a lot more confidence,” Blackburn said. “We scored some runs early and took off from there.”

The Vaqueros added two more runs in both the fourth and fifth innings to give the team a comfortable lead. With two outs in the fourth, catcher Zach Stockton (No.12) singled in second baseman Nicholas Prainito (No.3). Stockton then scored on an error from the third baseman to give the Vaqueros a 4-2 lead.

Jensen started out the fifth inning with a single and then stole second. Third baseman Jake Holton (No.29) doubled to put two on with one out. Prainito followed with an RBI single, but two runs scored due to an Oxnard error to make the score 6-2.

“We’re just having fun up there swinging the bats,” Jensen said. “We’re doing a better job executing our sacrifice bunts and just buying in as a team.”

Jensen had a good game, hitting 3-5 with four runs batted in while extending his hit streak to 10 games. Prainito finished 3-4 with 2 RBIs, and Stockton went 2-4 with 2 RBIs.

“It was nice to see our offense come through,” said head coach Jeff Walker. “We had a lot of 2-out RBI’s. This will help our momentum and build us up going forward.”

Patrick Caulfield (No.9) made a great throw from center field to home plate that tagged out a runner and ended the inning. Oxnard would have made the score 6-3 with a chance to add on more runs.

The Vaqueros busted the game open in the eighth inning, scoring five more runs to seal the deal.

After struggling with consistency this season, the Vaqueros improve to 18-17 with five games left to play. The team hopes to improve its consistency entering playoffs.

“We definitely responded well these past two games so I’m proud of our ballclub,” Jensen said. “I think we can make a deep run in the playoffs. We just gotta stay loose and have fun.”

The Vaqueros play Oxnard again Tuesday on the road and then play against Moorpark at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at Pershing Park.


More to Discover