HUNTINGTON BEACH -- The Orange Coast College baseball team fought off several rallies by rival Golden West and used some big hits down the stretch to hold off the Rustlers, 7-6, on Tuesday at GWC's Fred Hoover Field.
Coast held leads of 1-0, 4-0, 5-3 and 6-5 only to see the Rustlers battle back and tie the game each time. Finally, in the top of the eighth, a two-out double by Bijan Rademacher was followed up with an RBI-single to left by Bryan Garza, putting the Pirates (28-3-1, 15-2 in OEC) up for good.
Reliever Ryan Evans (2-0) wiggled out of a jam in the bottom of the eighth and Rademacher threw a scoreless ninth for his second save of the season, preserving the win for the top-ranked Pirates.
Boog Powell went 3-for-5 with a run scored and three RBI to lead Coast, while Rademacher and Garza each added two hits, a run and one RBI and Trent Woodward chipped in two hits and scored twice.
Keegan Yuhl, 9-0 in nine starts this year, did not earn a decision in the game, but threw well enough to win. The sophomore transfer allowed five runs (only one earned) on seven hits with two walks and two strikeouts over six innings.
Blake Cooper went 2-for-4 with three runs scored and RBI to lead the Rustlers (18-13-1, 9-8), who remain tied for third place with Riverside in the ever-tightening race for a playoff berth.
With the win, OCC maintains its three-game lead over Santa Ana atop the OEC standings with four games remaining. A Pirate win and SAC loss on Thursday would give OCC its first outright conference title since 1987.
June 7, 2012 SIX Pirates selected in 2012 MLB Draft
May 22, 2012 Carlson named State Player of the Year
May 21, 2012 Pirates drop two straight at Final Four
May 7, 2012 Altobelli named OEC Male Coach of the Year
May 1, 2012 Yuhl, Carlson among standouts in All-OEC honors
April 25, 2012 Pirates end regular season with 5-2 win over Lasers
April 24, 2012 Pirates clinch conference title with 7-2 win over Lasers
April 21, 2012 Pirates edged by Tigers in 12 innings
April 19, 2012 Pirates earn share of OEC title with win over Tigers
April 17, 2012 Pirates hold off Gauchos for 7-6 win
April 14, 2012 Pirates clobber Rustlers, 21-1
April 12, 2012 Pirates' Brennan outduels Fullerton's Lucas in 1-0 win
April 11, 2012 Coast escpaes Fullerton with 8-7 win
March 30, 2012 Winning streak ends as Pirates fall to Dons, 7-6
March 27, 2012 Pirates blank Gauchos, 13-0
March 24, 2012 Pirates keep winning after 5-3 victory over Gauchos
March 22, 2012 Rademacher's late blast lifts Pirates past Chargers
March 21, 2012 Yuhl goes the distance as Pirates double-up Chargers, 4-2
March 15, 2012 Brennan leads Pirates past Lasers, 3-1
March 14, 2012 Team effort leads the way as Pirates roll past Tigers, 10-4
March 12, 2012 Carlson, Yuhl lead Pirates past Rustlers
March 8, 2012 Pirates stunned by Hornets, 5-3
March 6, 2012 Late rally lifts Pirates over Dons
March 2, 2012 Pirates open OEC with 12-4 win over Chargers
February 25, 2012 Cougars snap OCC's win streak
February 24, 2012 Coast routs Southwestern, 13-1
February 23, 2012 Pirates keep rolling after 9-1 win over Canyons
February 20, 2012 Pirates earn third straight sweep; improve to 10-0-1
February 14, 2012 Pirates remain unbeaten with 3-2 win over Palomar
February 10, 2012 Carlson, Powell propel Pirates past Vikings
February 8, 2012 Late error helps Pirates slip away with win over Vikings
February 6, 2012 Pirates make it a clean sweep over Cuesta
February 3, 2012 Pirates open season with 6-3 win over Cuesta