Serrano's smash squeeze sends Pirates to 8-7 comeback win over Santa Barbara

Serrano's smash squeeze sends Pirates to 8-7 comeback win over Santa Barbara

COSTA MESA -- Even when a not-so-flattering school record is established, the Orange Coast College baseball team still finds a way to pull out an ugly win on Friday at Wendell Pickens Field as the Pirates rally late for an 8-7 nonconference win over visiting Santa Barbara City College.

The Pirates (17-10) overcame a record-setting 15-strikeout day at the plate and scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the ninth to had the Vaqueros (13-14) their second ulcer-busting loss in as many days. The previous mark for most strikeouts by OCC came in 2009 when Santa Ana's Christian Meza K'd 13 in a 4-2 loss for the Pirates.

Coast trailed 8-7 in the bottom of the ninth and seven-save closer Jake Holton on the mound for SBCC, things did not look promising. But, Chris Ceballos started things off with a line-drive single to center and was run for by Landon Silver. Domenic Donato bunted down the first-base line and Silver beat the throw to second, putting two runners on with nobody out.

After missing a pair of bunt opportunities, Ramiro Velasco legged out an infield single to short, loading the bases for Coast.

Jacob Doty, red hot this week for the Pirates at the plate (6-for-11, three runs, three RBI), lofted a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Silver to tie the game and advancing pinch-runner Javier Rosales to third.

That extra base by Rosales proved to be huge for Coast because on the next at-bat, Adam Serrano was asked to squeeze in the winning run. Holton's fastball was over the head of Serrano, but the freshman put the ball in a perfect spot -- a liner OVER the head of charging first baseman Joshua Perlmutter -- which scored Rosales with the winning run.

The Pirates' ninth-inning comeback win -- their fifth in a row and 11th over their past 14 games -- came a day after Coast used a five-run eighth inning to slip past the Vaqueros, 8-6.

OCC reliever Gus Culpo pitched 4 1/3 innings of solid relief to pick up the win, allowing just one run on four hits with one walk and five strikeouts.

Doty, who came through with a three-run triple in the first inning, finished with four RBI, while Jacob Gentry added two hits and two RBI. Velasco went 1-for-3 with three runs scored and Skylar Limonchi added a pair of hits and scored a run.

Five SBCC players had multi-hit games, including leadoff hitter Patrick Caulfield who went 3-for-5 with a run and two RBI.

The Pirates look for their sixth straight win on Saturday against Ventura College, beginning at 12 p.m. at Wendell Pickens Field.