Baseball finished its four-game week with two games at Oxnard on Saturday. The Cougars won the opener, 6-3, in 7 innings and let a late lead slip away to lose the nightcap, 10-7.
In the opener, Southpaw Pitcher Jared Villalobos allowed three runs, but also struckout seven Condors over six innings to earn the victory. Reliever Nico Martinez capped the contest with a perfect inning, including a pair of strikeouts, to earn the save. In Game 2, the two teams traded the lead back-and-forth until the final frame when the host Condors salvaged a win.
While Game 1 was a straightforward victory, the nightcap offered more drama. Martinez went from the bullpen in Game 1 to a starting role in Game 2 and allowed only one earned run in three innings of work. Rightfielder Zachary Morris's solo home run in the 2nd inning provided the Cougars with the early lead, but it was the first of five lead changes in the game. By the 5th inning, the host Condors had built three run lead, 4-1, however the Cougars chipped away and evened the game in the 6th inning on Centerfielder Kirk Woolf's RBI-single. Oxnard scored two more runs in the bottom of the frame to jump back out front, but Cuesta took the lead right back in the 7th. The Cougars tacked up three more runs before the stretch with the help from the faltering Condors. The Cougars rallied to take the lead, 7-6, behind a lone base-hit, four walks, one hit by pitch, two passed balls and an Oxnard error. The Condors went down quietly after the 7th-inning stretch, but took the lead for good with four runs off two Cuesta relievers in the 8th inning to seal the game, when Cuesta went down in order in the 9th inning. On the day, Centerfielder Kirk Woolf and Catcher AJ Esperanza led the Cougars' offense. Woolf posted a 3-for-6 day at the plate with three runs scored and a RBI, while Esperanza was 2-for-6 with a run scored and four RBI, including Woolf twice.
Cuesta is 2-4 on the season and ends its 2021 campaign with four games this week. The Cougars host Bakersfield on Wednesday (2 PM) and play at Allan Hancock on Thursday (2:30). The Cougars and rival Bulldogs will complete their five-game season series on Saturday with a doubleheader (12/3 PM) in San Luis Obispo.