The Saddleback baseball team battled for 11 innings on Tuesday afternoon at Golden West College before beating the Rustlers 2-1. The Gauchos trailed 1-0 through six innings before scraping across a couple of runs in the win.
Saddleback was battling back from a narrow 2-0 loss to Irvine Valley College on Saturday and saw its offensive struggles continue for most of the game on Tuesday before finally breaking through. Brian Romero scored the first run of the game for the Gauchos after tripling and being driven home by Eric Ehlow on a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 1-1 in the top of the seventh. Romero then singled home Brandon Cody in the 11th inning after Romero reached third base on an error by the right fielder. Romero (pictured) reached base three times on the day, finishing 2-for-4 with a walk.
Saddleback's pitching was outstanding as Seth Pedersen pitched a gem for nine innings. Pedersen allowed just two hits while striking out 10 and walking none; with the lone unearned run coming in the third inning for the Rustlers. Anthony Shew then pitched two innings of no-hit ball to pick up the win in running his record to 2-0 on the season.
Saddleback now sits in a four-way tie for first place in the Orange Empire Conference after improving to 11-3 overall and 2-1 in OEC play. The Gauchos will play again on Thursday when they host perennial power Santa Ana College. First pitch is scheduled for 2:00 PM, weather permitting.