Baseball team sees series tied after 5-2 loss at Riverside

Baseball team sees series tied after 5-2 loss at Riverside

Irvine Valley's baseball team had an early two-run lead, but couldn't hold on and fell, 5-2, at Riverside in the second game of the Orange Empire Conference series on Thursday afternoon.

Riverside (18-7 overall, 6-2 OEC) scored a pair of runs in the third and added single runs in the fourth, seventh and eighth innings to win going away.

For Irvine Valley (15-10, 3-5 OEC), sophomore starting pitcher Tyler Venturelli threw a complete game (though only 8.0 innings) as his record dipped to 4-2.

Venturelli allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits, three walks and struck out two.

Sophomore shortstop Tyler Odekirk went 2 for 5 with two doubles and freshman third baseman Ryan Rafferty was 2 for 3 to pace the Lasers at the plate.

Odekirk scored IVC's first run in the top of the first on a groundout by sophomore right fielder Cole Joy.

And then in the top of the third, Irvine Valley went up, 2-0, on an RBI single by Rafferty.

But in the bottom of the third, RCC's John Gonzalez drew a walk and scored on a sacrifice fly by Ryan Mota.

The Tigers then executed a delayed double steal with Peter McEvoy stealing home – to tie the game at 2-2 – and right fielder Dean Miller nabbing second.

In the fourth, Garrett McKee drew a one-out walk and scored on a RBI double by Gonzalez for a 3-2 RCC lead.

In the seventh inning, Jake Barham laced a lead-off single to right field and then advanced to second when the ball bounced through the right fielder's legs. Gonzalez walked. After a sacrifice bunt, McEvoy lofted a sacrifice fly to center field, plating Barham.

In the eighth, Mota reached on a fielding error at third base, went to second on a walk, advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a sacrifice fly by McKee for the 5-2 final score.

Gonzalez paced RCC with two hits in two official at bats and also scored and drove in a run.

RCC red-shirt sophomore starting RHP Acosta went the distance as he allowed the two runs (both earned) and scattered seven hits, walked none and struck out four to improve to 4-1. Acosta threw 103 pitches (72 strikes) and saw his earned run average creep to 1.88 (52.2 innings pitched).

Acosta's route-going performance was the Tigers' second complete game of the season.

Both teams will conclude the three-game OEC series on Friday when RCC visits IVC for a 2 p.m. start.

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