The Pierce College baseball team fell below .500 in conference play after losing to Santa Barbara City College at home in the first contest of a two-game series on Tuesday, April 14.
The team was on its way to being shut out, trailing 12-0 until the eighth inning when sophomore second baseman Quinn Conley hit a two-run single. The game ended 12-2.
Conley said that although he was able to bring the score up slightly, his team was too far behind to catch up by the end of the game.
“Unfortunately, we didn’t play very well today,” Conley said. “I was looking for a fast ball and the pitcher was throwing pretty hard. I was able to get us the two runs, but honestly we were already down at that point.”
Although his team did not play its best game, head coach Bill Picketts acknowledged that its opponents were a strong team.
“Well, we didn’t play well obviously,” Picketts said. “Santa Barbara is a quality team. I think they are in second place in our conference, as well as ranked very high in the state. We need to play almost a perfect game to beat a team like that.”
Santa Barbara City College assistant coach Jordan Stouffer agreed that his team played well despite the lack of practice it had.
“We didn’t really have a chance to prepare because we’ve played so many games the past couple of days,” Stouffer said. “We kind of have to stick with our own game speed and get to a speed where we play well at.”
Santa Barbara sophomore center fielder Brandon Evans homered in the first inning and said that although the team got off to a rocky start, it was able to quickly bounce back.
“My first hit in the first inning went over the fence,” Evans said. “After that we just got the ball rolling. It was kind of like a momentum shift. Once that happened, I felt that it helped our team start to hit better. It was a little contagious.”
Despite the loss, Picketts still admired his team’s hard work and dedication to the sport.
“It gets a little frustrating when it gets out of hand like it did today,” Picketts said. “My guys still played hard, and that’s really all I want. Eventually it will pay off in the future. We have more talented players coming in and if they keep playing the way they do, we will be successful.”
The Bulls will continue the series against Santa Barbara on the road on Thursday, April 16 at 2:30 p.m.