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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS | KEEPING TABS

Probasco, Arroyo Give Chico a Lift

March 31, 2001|FERNANDO DOMINGUEZ

Baseball Coach Lindsay Meggs of Chico State keeps reaping benefits from his Southland connections.

Meggs, a former assistant at Cal Lutheran and coach at Oxnard College, recruits heavily in the Valley and Ventura County region. The Wildcats this season feature five players from the area, with Kurt Probasco and David Arroyo making the biggest impact.

Probasco, a junior catcher-third baseman, leads Chico with a .368 batting average and Arroyo, a senior right-hander, is 3-0 with a 1.80 earned-run average as a reliever. The two played together at Buena High and Ventura College.

"They have been solid for us," Meggs said. "[Arroyo] is kind of our swing guy. You can use him in almost any role and that makes him very valuable to us."

Arroyo made one start, defeating Cal State Stanislaus, 7-1, on a seven-inning two-hitter on March 17.

He is essentially the team's closer, although he doesn't have any saves.

"I like my situation," Arroyo said. "I like coming in out of the bullpen because there's always a chance I'm going to pitch at any time. It keeps me on my toes."

Probasco, who had a team-best nine-game hitting streak this season, played mainly third base the last few games because Meggs wants left-handed-hitting catcher Corey Watts in the lineup.

Watts is batting .341.

"It's not new to me," Probasco said. "I played third base my freshman year at Ventura."

Chico, which won the Division II national championship in 1999 with the help of several players from the region, had an 11-game winning streak snapped by Westmont College, 7-0, in the second game of a doubleheader on Tuesday.

Probasco said the Wildcats squandered several scoring opportunities, irritating Meggs, who had the hitters run for more than an hour after the game.

"It was a long day," Probasco said. "But I guess it worked."

The Wildcats pounded Westmont, 15-3, on Wednesday.

Second baseman Kevin O'Hara, a junior from Chatsworth and Valley College; outfielder Mike Anderson, a sophomore from Ventura High and Oxnard College, and outfielder Brandon Voorhees, a junior from Simi Valley and Moorpark College, round out the region's contingent at Chico.

*

They are having a Ball at Cal State Northridge today and Sunday.

Right-hander Cindy Ball is in town with the Pacific softball team to play the Matadors in a Big West Conference three-game series.

The teams meet in a doubleheader today at noon and in a third game on Sunday at noon.

Ball, a junior, was an all-state player at Camarillo High. She's the ace for Pacific with an 18-3 record, a 1.38 ERA and 10 shutouts.

"It's going to be great to see my family and friends," Ball said. "My freshman year, when we came down there, it was a fun experience."

The Tigers (29-5), ranked No. 18, have a 16-game winning streak after defeating No. 14 Oregon State, 4-1, on Wednesday at Stockton. Ball held the Beavers to four hits.

"I'm getting the job done, but I'm not satisfied," Ball said. "I think I haven't been at my best and I want to get better."

Ball said the Tigers have their sights on winning the Big West title and reaching the Women's College World Series.

Pacific didn't qualify for a regional last season.

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