With strong performances from starting pitchers, Westmont Baseball (13-5, 4-2 GSAC) took both ends of a doubleheader on Saturday at Cartan Field to complete a three-game sweep of the Oaks of Menlo (4-14, 0-6). Westmont won the first game 8-6, then took the afternoon game 8-4.
Eric Oseguera took the mound for the Warriors and improved his record to 4-0 on the season by pitching six scoreless innings. Oseguera allowed just five hits and struck out five without issuing a walk. In five starts, Oseguera has an ERA of 1.35 in 26 2/3 innings of work.
The Warriors took a 1-0 lead in the top of first after Robbie Haw and Brady Renck delivered back-to-back singles to start the game. Haw then scored on a groundout by Bryce McFeely.
The Warriors’ 1-0 advantage held up until the seventh inning when David Martinez and Trey Dunn delivered back-to-back solo home runs to give Westmont a 3-0 lead. Martinez, a left-handed batter, scorched the ball over the right field fence, before Dunn, a righty, pounded the ball past the barrier in left.
Menlo scored its first run in the bottom of the seventh before Westmont added a couple of insurance runs in the top of the eight. Westmont benefited from bruises inflicted on McFeely and Ryan DeSaegher when they were both hit by pitches. When Parker Zarbaugh was walked, the bases were full of Warriors with no outs. After a pitching change, Michael Soper sent a single into right field to drive in McFeely and DeSaegher.
Those insurance runs proved to be necessary when Menlo posted three runs in the bottom of the eighth. The Oaks were threatening to score more with a man on second and no outs when Gabe Arteaga took the mound. After hitting the first batter with the first pitch, Arteaga prevented any more damage by retiring the next three in order on a strikeout, line out to left and pop out to short.
In the top of the ninth, Haw led off and was hit by a pitch. Over the two games, Warriors were hit 10 times, but no one more than Haw who wore the baseball three times. Shane Hofstadler and DeSaegher were each hit twice.
With those three hit-by-pitch at bats, Haw earned the dubious distinction of becoming the career favorite target of opposing pitchers. Having been hit by pitch 38 times, he has surpassed Michael Stefanic who previously held the record at 37.
With Haw on first and one away, McFeely reached on an error, moving Haw over to second. Then DeSaegher drove a double down the left field line, bringing Haw home and advancing McFeely to third. Parker O’Neil followed with a single to right center that allowed McFeely to score and DeSaegher to take his recently vacated place at third. DeSaegher would later score on a wild pitch.
In the bottom of the ninth, the Oaks’ Jonathan Charbonea blasted a two-run home run down the left-field line to draw the Oaks to within two runs. However, Westmont’s Carlos Moreno would strike out the next two batters, bringing the game to an end.
In the seven-inning second game, starter Chase Goddard (3-1) got off to an unfortunate start when three unearned runs scored in the bottom of the first as the result of a pair of Warrior errors. Those would be, however, the only runs Goddard allowed in five innings of work. Goddard gave up just five hits while striking out four and walking two.
Westmont’s offense kicked in in the top of the third when Paul Mezurashi led off with a double down the left field line. This is when Haw collected his second hit-by-pitch, tying the career record. A groundout by Renck moved both runners up a base before McFeely drove a two-RBI single into right center, pulling the Warriors to within one run.
Westmont took the lead with a three-run top of the fourth. Hofstadler and Finn Snyder were hit by pitches to start the inning. One out later, Haw reached first when he was walked. With the bases loaded, Renck drove in Jack Fletcher, who was running for Hofstadler, and Snyder with a single into right field. Haw, then scored from second when McFeely singled to left center.
Westmont put up another three-spot on the scoreboard in the top of the sixth. McFeely and DeSaegher reached on back-to-back walks. Two outs later, Hofstadler sent a ball into left field to drive in McFeely and move DeSaegher to second.
With Orion Medeiros running for Hofstadler, both he and DeSaegher advanced a base on a wild pitch. David Martinez was asked to pinch hit and drove in DeSaegher and Mederios with a single, putting Westmont up 8-3.
The Oaks scored a single run in the bottom of the ninth, but it was not nearly enough to prevent the Warrior victory.
Westmont will be back in action next weekend when they welcome San Diego Christian to Russ Carr Field for a four-game series. Doubleheaders on both Friday and Saturday will begin at 11:00 a.m.
Ron Smith is the sports information director at Westmont College.