Hancock College sophomore right fielder Jimmy Van Ostrand said he and his teammates did not dwell on the past.
That, he said, was a big reason why the Bulldogs earned a big win, 6-4 over Cuesta at Hancock Thursday in their Western State Conference baseball opener.
Hancock is 4-3 overall.
Adam Cole smacked the game winner for the Bulldogs, a two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth that snapped a 4-4 tie. Hancock had seen Cuesta rally to tie the game after the Bulldogs took a 4-0 lead with four second-inning runs.
Hancock started the year 3-0. The Bulldogs scored a total of 52 runs in their first three games. Then they lost all of their games at the Fresno Tournament.
"We really didn/t think too long about it," Van Ostrand said. "We know we have a good baseball team. We knew Fresno wasn/t our whole season.
"I think one thing that helped is, we have a lot of sophomore guys. That helped us to get our focus.
"Jason Carlson got us started with that home run, then Cole/s home run in the eighth, that was huge."
For at least the past several years, Hancock has been runner-up to Cuesta in the WSC North Division. The win Thursday was the Bulldogs/ first against the Cougars for third-year Hancock coach Chris Stevens.
However, "We really don/t dwell on who we/re playing," Stevens said. "Conference games are the most important. They/re the ones that determine your post-season."
Stevens liked what he saw from his pitchers, who combined on a six-hitter.
Drew Bernier pitched the first five innings, then Jacob Kougl relieved him. Todd Nelson pitched a one-hit ninth to earn the save. Kougl picked up the win.
Carlson slugged a solo home run in the second inning. The Bulldogs/ other runs that inning came on a sacrifice fly, a bases loaded walk and a balk.
Cuesta sophomore Dustin Kelly, who graduated from St. Joseph and played for the Knights/ 2002 CIF Division V championship team, hit a two-run home run for the Cougars in the fourth.
The Cougars tied the game in the fifth on RBI singles by Jhrell Miller and Brad Croxton. Hancock made one error. Cuesta had none.
"After Fresno," Stevens said, "We needed to get back on the field."
The Bulldogs play at Cuesta at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Hancock 9, Venura 0
The Bulldogs (3-0, 4-1) kept motoring toward a Western State Conference showdown with Cuesta with an easy home court conference win over Ventura.
The Pirates are now 0-5, 2-5. Ventura and Hancock tied for the WSC North Division title last year, but the nucleus from that Ventura team is gone.
Cuesta is a perennial WSC power. The Cougars were down last year but are on their game this year. The teams are scheduled to play at 2 p.m. March 16 at Hancock in a makeup of a scheduled earlier match that was rained out.
"All the opposing coaches tell me it/s going to be between us and Cuesta," for the WSC North Division title, said first-year Hancock coach Ginny Barnett.
Hancock singles players Lori Valadez, Monica Krier, Carlene Holst, Clairol Lozano, Carly Barnett and Amanda Urias all won in straight sets.
Bulldogs doubles tandems Valadez and Holst, Krier and Lozano, and Barnett and Julie San Jose all won eight-game doubles pro sets.
Ginny Barnett liked the way Holst and Lozano responded when they were pushed.
"Carlene won the first set. She fell behind in the second set, then she finished it off in straight sets.
"Claire was game for game with (her opponent) in the first set. Then she won that and finished off strong in straight sets."
Holst defeated Shely Gonzales 6-1, 7-5 at No. 3 singles. Lozano downed Jamie Hrboka 7-5, 6-0 at No. 4.
Hancock/s other singles players lost a total of just 16 games. Valadez and Holst, and Krier and Lozano each won 8-3 in doubles. San Jose and Carly Barnett won 8-4.
The Bulldogs host Santa Barbara at 2 p.m. next Tuesday in another WSC North Division match.
Ventura 9, Hancock 0
VENTURA 7 The powerful Pirates overwhelmed the Bulldogs (0-3, 0-5).
Hancock won a total of just eight games. Davis Best and Lewis Smith took three of those, losing 8-3 at No. 1 doubles.
The Bulldogs play at Santa Barbara at 2 p.m. next Tuesday.
Bakersfield 8, Hancock 0
BAKERSFIELD 7 The Bulldogs (2-3, 3-9) went up a one-woman pitching juggernaut by the name of Lindsey Vincent and collected just one hit, Dalia Daniels/ single.
"(Vincent) probably has six (Division) I schools looking at her," Hancock coach Eddie Grose said. "She/s probably the best pitcher in the state." Vincent is a sophomore.
Vincent can hit, too, She belted a two-run home run in the sixth inning. Keeley Johnson hit a two-run homer for Bakersfield in the first
Hancock plays at home at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday against Los Angeles Valley College in a WSC North Division game. The game Thursday was an interdivision one.
Cuesta 11, Citrus 0
GLENDORA 7 Cougars pitcher Whitney Jenks (5-3) three-hit the Owls in a WSC interdivision game that was called after the fifth inning because of the 10-run rule.
Heather Sanders went 3-for-4 with a double and four RBIs for the Cougaars. She scored twice. Erika Campbell and went 2-for-2 for Cuesta which improved to 5-0, 6-8.
Righetti 15, Santa Maria 3
Singles players Riken Tank, Lee Medvedoff and David Seidenberg swept their sets, powering the Warriors (1-1) to victory in a non-league match at the Minami Center.
Santa Maria is 0-2.
Ricky Chan usually plays No. 1 singles for the Saints. He teamed with Alex Martinez in Santa Maria/s No. 1 doubles spot Thursday, and the pair swept their three sets.
SLO 14, Santa Ynez 4
SANTA YNEZ 7 Garrett Gunning and Steve Sauer gave the Pirates (1-1) the bulk of their four points by sweeping their doubles sets.
Colin Pollock gave Santa Ynez its lone singles point.
Nipomo 413, Righetti 423
NIPOMO 7 Three Titans broke 80, as Nipomo/s inaugural varsity boys golf team picked up a win in a non-league match at Black Lake.
Ross Silverberg, Kyle Springer and Robert Gerohan shot 74, 77 and 79 respectively for the victorious Titans. Righetti/s Daniel Miller was the medalist with a 75.
Eric Barnard shot a 76 for Righetti (1-2).
Arroyo Grande 422
Santa Ynez 457
SANTA YNEZ 7 Medalist Bryan PIerce led the Eagles to victory at the Alisal Ranch course in a non-league match.
Pierce shot a 74. Brett Miller led Santa Ynez with an 81.
AG boys 100, Cabrillo 35
AG 99, Cabrillo 33
ARROYO GRANDE 7 The PAC-5 League-based Eagles rolled past their Los Padres League counterparts in a season opener.
Arroyo Grande/s girls had three double winners. They were Megan Howard in the discus (139-6) and shot put (47-5); Amy Wells in the 1,600 meters (5:43) and 3,200 (12:58); and Kamron Waltergrist in the 100 (13.41) and the 200 (28.01).
Eagles shot put star Mark Lewis got his season off to a solid start with a winning throw of 57-3 1/2.
March 05, 2004