Pirates advance to Sectionals following 11-6 win over Riverside

Pirates advance to Sectionals following 11-6 win over Riverside

COSTA MESA -- The Orange Coast College baseball team took another step forward on the road to the Final Four with an 11-6 win over Riverside City College on Saturday at Wendell Pickens Field in Game 2 of the Southern California Super Regional playoffs.

With the win, the second-seeded Pirates (31-13) eliminated the ninth-seeded Tigers (27-17) and will advance to the Southern California Sectionals, where they will host No. 11 El Camino (28-17), beginning on Friday at 2 p.m. Game 2 will be set for Saturday at 1 p.m. at OCC with a third game (if necessary) on Sunday at 12 p.m. at OCC.

Domenic Donate went 3-for-5 with two runs and four RBI, while Murphy Stehly added two hits, a run and three RBI for the Pirates. Cameron Jabara (7-0) allowed three runs on five hits with five strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings.

Unlike Friday's 2-1 win over the Tigers, Coast jumped out early and ran away from Riverside with an 8-0 lead through five innings. 

Coast (the visiting team) took a 3-0 lead in the top of the second when walks by Donato and Jacob Doty were followed with a two-RBI triple by Stehly, who also scored on the play when the throw got past Riverside catcher Andrew Juardo.

In the top of the third, Chris Ceballos singled and trotted around the bases when Donato launched his second home run of the season over the left-field fence, putting OCC up, 5-0.

Coast grabbed command of the game in the top of the fifth with three more runs, courtesy of an RBI-grounder by Ceballos, a run-scoring balk and an RBI-double be Stehly, giving Coast a comfortable 8-0 advantage.

Riverside, battled back and trimmed the deficit in half with three runs in the sixth and one more run in the seventh to make it 8-4 before a run-scoring passed ball and a two-run double by Donato closed out the scoring for the Pirates. Riverside would add a pair in the bottom of the ninth before reliever Gus Culpo struck out Daniel Martinez to end the game.

This weekend's Sectional matchup between the Pirates and Warriors is a rematch of last year's Sectional, won by ECC in three games.