PC baseball beats Taft
Jamie Good had carried the Porterville College baseball team through 7 1/2 innings, so the Pirates were determined to reward their pitcher.
After Good was done for the day and the game still tied 1-1, the Pirates were exhorting each other to break the deadlock so Good could be the winning pitcher as they came to the dugout before hitting in the bottom of the eighth inning. The Pirates responded by scoring two runs for a 3-1 win over Taft on Tuesday at Pirate Stadium.
PC needed the effort from Good, who allowed just one unearned run through eight innings while scattering nine hits. But as PC coach Jake Kiser noted, three of those hits came on bunt singles which he said, “we turned them into hits.”
So while PC didn’t particularly play well defensively or offensively, Good pitched through it. Then in the bottom of the eighth, Christian Hamett and Kyle Verdegaal hit back-to-back doubles and James Lopez followed with an RBI single to provide the final margin.
Dakota Kirkman came on in the ninth to pick up the save. Kirkman allowed a leadoff single, but then needed just four pitches to end the game. He struck out the next batter on three pitches and then against the final batter, induced a game-ending double play.
“Obviously, we pitched very well,” Kiser said. “Jamie did a heckuva job. Where we’re at, I think, we need to learn how to win games. It wasn’t pretty, but we found a way to win when push came to shove. Defensively, I don’t think we did real good. I don’t think we swung the bats real well. We’ve still got a ways to go.”
In the seventh, Taft, which could only score one run on 10 hits, had runners at first and second with one out after an infield single and Good misplayed a bunt. But Good induced an inning-ending double play to end the threat. Good allowed a single in the eighth, but PC catcher Andrew Lopez threw out the runner trying to steal.
Porterville (7-10, 3-7 in the Central Valley Conference) took a 1-0 lead in the first when Verdegaal singled, stole second and scored on Dylan Watson’s single. Verdegaal and Hamett each had two hits for Porterville.
REEDLEY 2-8, PC 1-4
Porterville College continued to show improvement, but ended up dropping a doubleheader at Reedley in CVC play, losing 2-1 in the opener and 8-4 in the nightcap. Chelsie Childs pitched a complete game five-hitter for PC in the opener, but did allow a solo home run. Offensively for PC, Jessica Heffley went 2-for-3, Bethany Threlkeld and Chaycie Atene each added a hit and Erin Keener went 1-for-3 with a double.
In the nightcap, PC led 4-3 going into the bottom of the fifth, but Reedley took advantage of one bad inning by the Pirates as Reedley scored five runs to take an 8-4 lead. Maria West went 1-for-3 with two RBI, Ashley Keener and Threlkeld were each 1-for-3 with an RBI and Heffley and Atene each added a hit for Porterville.
PC coach Vickie Dugan said she was pleased with her team’s approach at the plate as it struck out just twice during the entire doubleheader.