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The Hornets opened Orange Empire Conference-play on Tuesday taking a 4-1 loss against visiting Saddleback College.

The loss puts FC at 5-10 overall and 0-1 in the OEC, while the Gaucho win puts them at 11-5 overall and 1-0 in conference.

Saddleback went up 3-0 in the third inning. With two outs and the bases loaded, Saddleback's Willie Lajoie hit a shot to right center field scoring Zack Bowman and Riley Kasper. A throwing error allowed Reed Beverly to come home for the third run.

Down 3-0 in the bottom of the fifth, Fullerton got on the board when Alex Gonzalez ripped the ball up the middle scoring Ryan Penalber.

The Gauchos added another run in the top of the seventh. With the bases loaded, Casey Downs worked the count earning a walk that forced Beverly home.

In the bottom ninth, the Hornets had a shot to tie it up. With runners on first (Ryan Penalber) and third (Adrian Gutierrez), pinch hitter Eddie Ureno hit one to the right side, but first baseman Lajoie made a nice play on the ball to tag first for the final out of the game.  

Patrick Showalter got the nod to start on the mound for the Hornets and took the loss. He went a respectable 6.2 innings with 3 runs against and had 3 strikeouts. Alfredo Castaneda threw 0.2 with 3 walks and 1 strikeout. Nation Harrison tossed 1.2 innings with no hits, 2 K's and a walk.

Up Next: Fullerton (5-10 overall, 0-1 OEC) will play at Saddleback for game two of the three-game series on Thursday, March 7th. Game time is at 2:00 pm. 

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