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Coronado pounds out back-and-forth win over Desert Oasis — PHOTOS

Coronado’s bats were the kryptonite to a sluggish defensive effort to secure an 11-9 home win over Desert Oasis on Thursday.

Senior Louis Dion put on an offensive showcase for the Cougars (9-6), going 3-for-4 with three RBIs. The Reinhardt University commit doubled three times, including clearing the bases in the third inning to break a 7-7 tie.

“I was just trying to have a two-strike approach,” Dion said. “I was trying to see ball, hit ball. I saw the curveball coming in, and I just saw it early and got to it.”

In a back-and-forth game riddled with five errors, the Diamondbacks (8-12) took a 1-0 lead off an error in the top of the first.

Desert Oasis extended its lead to 3-0 in the second with a double off the left-field wall by senior Connor Jacob and a double from sophomore Lincoln Guillermo.

Coronado responded aggressively in the bottom of the second, scoring five runs on five hits to take a 5-3 lead. A single by senior AJ Stalteri drove in two.

Cougars coach Garrett Smith said he made a few unorthodox lineup adjustments after a 5-1 loss to the Diamondbacks on Tuesday.

“We had to make some decisions offensively today to put some guys in that are swinging the bat really well that maybe also puts our defense in jeopardy a little,” Smith said. “We knew they could pull it out with the bats, and we have faith in our guys.”

Desert Oasis struck back to take a 7-5 lead in the third with two singles and the help of a Coronado error, but the Cougars came back in the bottom of the frame, scoring six runs on six hits to take back an 11-7 lead.

Junior Dillon Victoravich was a workhorse for the Cougars, amassing 11 strikeouts in 100 pitches over five innings.

“He was getting stronger as he went,” Smith said. “In the beginning it was a little bit shaky with our defense, even with him coming out of the first inning. But as you can see, he got stronger in the fourth, so we just let him go into the fifth.”

Victoravich said he focused on getting ahead in the count and working late into the game.

“It feels great knowing that my teammates and my coach have that confidence in me. I’ve proved time and time again, I can go deep into games,” he said. “You know, if they score two runs in the third inning, I’m gonna come back and try to dominate the fourth and fifth inning.”

Desert Oasis got a two-run home run by Sebastian Frye in the seventh inning for the final runs of the game.

For Coronado, Smith said there is still some fine-tuning that needs to be done.

“The biggest thing is getting out of the first inning without allowing runs. That’s our biggest thing this season is getting ourselves in a hole early,” Smith said. “Honestly, it’s our defense at times that’s been our Achilles heel this year. We do a pretty good job when we get out of that first inning with no runs scored.”

Contact Jacob Powers at jpowers@reviewjournal.com. Follow@jaypowers__ on X.

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