The Pirate baseball team ushered in Ventura College Athletics' return to action on Saturday in a double-header against Cuesta College at Pirate Park. VC went 394 days between competitions due to the Covid-19 health emergency, and the teams tried to make up for lost time in Ventura's 5-3, 16-inning thriller in the opener. Anthony Chavez hit a 2-run bomb to left field for the walk-off victory. VC dropped the nightcap 3-0 in seven innings.
Ventura 5, Cuesta 3 - 16 innings
Chavez's walk-off home run punctuated the opener while Anthony Arancibia-Mundy was the hottest hitter for the Pirates, recording five base hits, including a double, while scoring one run. Chase McBean was 2-4 with three walks, two runs batted in and three runs scored.
Joseph Wiersma yielded a pair of runs over five complete innings with the start on the mound and the Pirate bullpen allowed just one run over 11 innings of work. Luc Polit threw the final two frames punching out four Cougars to pick up the victory.
After falling behind 2-0 in the third inning, VC began to come back in the seventh when McBean hit a solo home run off the left field net.
Ventura tied the score in the bottom of the ninth inning. Arancibia-Mundy doubled to lead off the inning and advanced to third on Connor Laeng's sacrifice bunt. McBean then singled in the tying run to send the game into extra innings.
After Cuesta scored a run in the top of the 14th inning, Ventura came back to tie the score once again. McBean walked to lead off the frame and advanced to second when Chavez was hit by a pitch. McBean moved to third on a double-play ball and scored on a wild pitch with two outs.
McBean drew a 1-out walk in the bottom of the 16th and scored on Chavez's walk-off homer to left field.
Ventura 0, Cuesta 3 - 7 innings
In the 7-inning nightcap, the Pirates could not take advantage of runners on base, stranding 10. JR Godinez was 3-4 in the game, including a double, while Travis Vaala and Elijah Maris each recorded two hits. McBean also doubled and walked twice in the contest.
JuanCarlos Rodarte took the loss, pitching 4.2 innings to start the game. He gave up one run and one hit while striking out four batters with five walks.
The Pirates next travel to Moorpark on Thursday April 15 for a double-header with the Raiders.