Glendale College's winning baseball formula was on full display Thursday night at Gerry Collis Field: Solid pitching, error-free defense and executing bunts, hit-and-run plays and other small-ball tactics to perfection.
The Vaqueros moved closer to the Western State Conference South Division title with a 6-3 win over Bakersfield College, Glendale's second win over BC in three days.
Glendale (23-9, 17-3 WSC) has four games left and is three games ahead of both BC (24-10, 16-6) and College of the Canyons (19-13, 14-6) in the loss column.
BC has byes on Saturday and Tuesday, then concludes its regular season next Thursday and Friday. Glendale and Canyons have four games remaining.
"I have no idea," BC coach Tim Painton said of the Renegades' postseason hopes. "We'll sit Saturday and Tuesday and watch what happens and come back next Thursday and Friday to play and see where it takes us."
There are four at-large spots up for grabs, and BC should be a solid contender for one of those if it can't gain one of the two spots set aside for the WSC South.
"If we take care of our last two ballgames, I would certainly think we're in," Painton said. "But I'm not on that committee. I don't control any of it. Right now we're tied for the most wins in Southern California and we're No. 5 in Southern California. That accounts for something."
BC had its rough spots Thursday. And whenever the Vaqueros had scoring chances, they seemed to come through.
"We competed very well but we didn't play as well as we're capable of playing in a big ball game," Painton said. "Give Glendale credit. They capitalized on every opportunity they had and they scored runs."
In the second inning, BC right fielder Jordan Turner dropped a fly ball with two outs and Glendale capitalize when Sergio Plasencia followed with a two-run double.
Cole Hallum led off the BC fifth with a double, but he was quickly retired when the Vaqueros tagged him out on the hidden ball trick.
BC trailed 2-0 entering the sixth when it mounted its best scoring chance.
Nick Sakowski singled with one out and Kyle Nixon was hit by a pitch. Erik Williams hit a chopper off the tip of third baseman Julian Jarrard's glove that rolled into short left field. Sakowski raced to third and stopped. Nixon kept running and was nearly to third when he realized Sakowski had stopped at third. Nixon was tagged out in a rundown.
Blayne Ontiveros followed with a two-run double that tied it 2-2.
Glendale came right back to score twice in the seventh to take a 4-2 lead when Plasencia was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and Justin Jones executed a perfect suicide squeeze bunt.
With two outs in the eighth, Nixon, Williams and Ontiveros drew successive walks to load the bases and Justin Martinez blooped an RBI single to right field to make it 4-3.
Right fielder Edgar Montes threw Williams out at the plate to erase the potential tying run and end the inning.
Glendale added two in the ninth for the final margin, again relying on "little ball."
Montes led off with a single and Mark Strazzeri faked a bunt and swung away as the BC defense charged. His chopper bounced over third baseman Sakowski into left field with Montes racing to third.
Plasencia and Jones added sacrifice flies for the final two runs.