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BC baseball continues strong play with victory over Ventura in doubleheader opener

After seeing its seven-game winning streak snap in Game two of a doubleheader at Ventura on Thursday, the Renegades returned to their winning ways Saturday afternoon.

Will Reynolds went 2 for 4 with two RBIs, including a run scoring single during a three-run fifth, to lead BC to a 7-4, seven-inning victory over the Pirates in the first of two games at Gerry Collis Field in Western State Conference action.

Ventura (8-11, 4-7) opened the scoring in the third inning, capitalizing on a wild pitch by Bakersfield starter David Villegas to take an early 1-0 lead.

But the Renegades (12-4, 9-2) countered with two runs in the bottom half of the inning, two more in the fourth and then three in the fifth to regain control of the game.

Cal State Bakersfield commit Benji Caggianelli finished things off with a perfect seventh, including two strikeouts, to earn his fourth save in 10 appearances this season.

Villegas (1-0) cruised through the first two innings, but began to struggle with his control. He walked two in the third, hit a batter in the fourth and then issued two more base on balls in the fifth as Ventura cut the BC lead to 4-3. Villegas gave up just two hits and struck out three in five innings.

Trailing 1-0 in the third, Bakersfield took the lead for good in its next at-bat. Jose Ruiz walked and scored when Matthew Patton’s ground ball single went through the legs of Pirates left fielder Garrick Levesque. Patton wound up on third and scored on a groundout by Garrett Pavletich for a 2-1 Renegades’ lead.

BC made the most of a pair of walks, a stolen base and a hit batter to plate two more runs in the fourth, before giving itself more breathing room with a big fifth.

Xabi Iparraguirre and Wes Bradford, Bakersfield’s No. 8 and 9 hitters, had run-scoring hits in the inning. The two combined to go 4 for 6 with three runs scored, two RBIS and a walk for the Renegades, who finished 10 hits.

The two teams were scheduled for Game 2 later Saturday. Bakersfield has now won 10 of 12 games since opening the season with a pair of losses to Moorpark.