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COC Baseball Continues Rocky Start

Posted: February 15, 2008 2:15 a.m.
Updated: April 17, 2008 5:02 a.m.
All-Western State Conference catcher Luis Perez did not have an all-conference game Thursday for the College of the Canyons baseball team. None of the Cougars did.

Four Santa Barbara City College runs were scored directly off Perez passed balls and overthrown pickoff attempts alone as the Cougars struggled to a 10-2 mistake-filled non-conference home loss, their third consecutive defeat and seventh in nine games to kick off a frustrating season.
"Bad baseball," said Cougars head coach Chris Cota. "We did everything badly. We didn't hit, we didn't pitch, we didn't play catch. It was just bad baseball all around."
While the Cougars kicked the ball around on the infield, Santa Barbara sophomore pitcher Pete Ruiz, a future University of Oregon Duck, cruised on the mound.
The right-hander went the distance, holding the Cougars to just four hits and scoreless beyond a two-run fourth inning.
COC's only runs of the game came on an RBI double by freshman John Contrerez, who then came around to score on a two-out dropped third-strike with John Hay at the plate.
"He's had a lot of weight on him this year," Santa Barbara head coach Teddy Warrecker said of his starter. "I told him before the game, 'All you gotta do is just do your best.' And even when he got himself into trouble, he worked out of it."
The Cougar pitching staff had no such luck.
Starter Mike McCravey lasted only four innings, giving up five runs with the damage starting in a rough third frame.
It started with a dropped strikeout by Perez.
Then with a runner on first, Perez threw the ball into the outfield and the runner came all the way around to score.
It was a sign of things to come.
"Our team is all about putting pressure on the defense," Warrecker said. "We do a lot of damage on the base paths being aggressive and that's what you saw right there."
After back-to-back walks and a groundout to advance the runners, an Aaron Bauman double plated two more runs. Catcher Jake Tipton followed with a single for a 4-0 lead.
Santa Barbara (7-2) made it 5-0 with an RBI single to shortstop by Brenden Pichette in the fourth, with the Cougars then cutting the lead nearly in half in their half of the inning.
The Vaqueros kept applying pressure.
Another run scored in the sixth when Jonathan Toerrones was hit by an 0-2 Caleb Deville offering and Alonso made the freshman pitcher pay with an RBI double. With two outs, Alonso scored from third base on a double steal, taking advantage of a slow throw to second by the catcher Perez.
"I'm concerned," Cota said. "Because I think we should be a good team but we are not showing it right now. Conference play starts on Thursday and we're still trying to find a niche."
The capper came in a three-run ninth inning.
With Steve Burton on the mound, two runners reached on walks and then moved up two bases on two Perez passed balls, the second leading to a run. On another errant Perez throw on another double steal, another run scored. The Vaqueros then added their 10th run on a Corey Krupp single.
It was a fitting end to a mistake-filled game.


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