Cuesta picked up its second straight win over Ventura, 9-1, and improved to 4-3 against the Western State Conference, while moving within a game of first place.
The Cougars struck first after Sophomore Gabe Barthelmass’s leadoff triple in the 1st inning. Barthelmass scored on Catcher Ryan McCarty’s single and All-WSC First Baseman Aidan Nagle plated McCarty on his single two plays later.
The Pirates halved the Cougars’ lead with a run in the 5th, 2-1, but the Cougars scored four runs in their half of the inning, including Barthlemass and McCarty again off a single by Nagle, to extend their lead, 6-1. In the 6th inning, the Cougars put the game out of reach as Barthelmass and McCarty both scored again and the Cougars cruised to victory, 9-1.
Barthelmass was 3-for-5 with three runs scored and a RBI, while McCarty was 1-for-2 with a walk and a hit-by-pitch, while adding three runs and a pair of RBI. Nagle and All-WSC Third Baseman Mason Grotto both drove in three runs on the day. Sophomore Right-hander Braeden Gowdy made his first start of the year, but also earned his third straight victory. Gowdy, who picked up two relief wins last week, hurled a season-high six innings and struck out six Buccaneers, while allowing only four hits and one run.
The Cougars play a make-up game at Moorpark tomorrow (1 PM) and play at Oxnard on Saturday (1 PM).