East County Sports

ROUNDUP: Hillers, Highlanders win



EastCountySports.com staff report


VISTA – Grossmont senior TYLER PARENT drove in a run and pitched three innings of shutout relief as the Grossmont Foothillers defeated Vista, 7-2, in an Aztec-Foothiller Tournament game featuring top 20 teams on Wednesday.

Parent singled in the Foothillers’ first run in the top of the first and had two hits on the day.

Later, Parent allowed just two hits over three innings to preserve Grossmont’s lead and the Foothillers moved to 3-1-1 on the season.

“Tyler Parent was outstanding in relief,” Grossmont coach JORDAN ABRUZZO said.”We are playing good baseball right now. Guys are buying into being aggressive and letting it fly. “We just have to continue to keep working hard and playing the game the right way.”

“We just have to continue to keep working hard and playing the game the right way.”

Sophomore GIOVANNI GIGANTI, the former San Carlos Little League slugger, had two hits and drove in two runs on a seventh-inning double for the visitors.

“I was looking for a first-pitch fastball and I got a good pitch to hit,” Giganti said. “I was able to drive in two runs and I was just glad I could help the team win today.”

After the Hillers scored the opening run, Vista opened up an early lead in the bottomg of the first inning on a passed ball and a sacrifice fly.

In the fourth, Grossmont sophomore BRANDON SMITH singled on a 1-1 pitch, driving in Parent (walk).

Foothillers junior ZAK FARRIS, who doubled to reach, scored the go-ahead run on an error.

Freshman KEONI VALDEZ singled on a 1-0 pitch to drive home senior pinch-runner MATTHEW KEAGY.

Senior AUSTIN ODOM followed with a double, driving in Valdez to cap the Hillers’ four-run outburst.

Parent came in on the fifth as the Foothills finished off the Panthers.

“The thought process I had coming in to relieve was to hold the lead and get in the win column for my team,” Parent said. “My goal when I’m on the mound is to always keep the hitters off balance and mix in my offspeed pitches.

“I had a great defense behind me today like I always do. It was a good team win.”

Grossmont will participate in the Bill Dickens GMC Tournament starting next Monday when it gets a rematch with No. 2 Eastlake at Gizoni Field.


HELIX 9, MONTGOMERY 0 – San Jose State-bound senior BRANDON PETERSON hit a three-run home run in the first inning, while three Highlanders combined to limit the Aztecs to three hits in an Aztec-Foothiller Tournament win in La Mesa Wednesday afternoon.

The fourth-ranked Highlanders improved to 4-1.

Senior AUSTIN KRETZSCHMAR, who has committed to Stanford, went 3-for-3 with an RBI double in the second inning.

Kretzschmar singled to lead off the bottom of the first, then junior ERICK SMELKO was hit by a pitch.

Peterson then sent the first pitch he saw over the right-field fence to the three-run shot.

ADAM MARTINEZ drove in ZACH OWENS (double) later in the first to cap the four-run frame.

Helix’s CARLOS OQUITA hit a two-run home run and also doubled.

Highlander starter JOSIAH ESTRADA went four innings, allowing two runs and striking out four.

Junior CHRISTOPHER PERULESKI then went two innings, allowing one hit and one walk for Helix.

Helix’s JORDON THOMPSON finished things up with a strikeout in the seventh.

Helix will next be in action in the Bill Dickens GMC Tournament when the Highlanders host St. Augustine on Monday at 4.


SAN YSIDRO 3, WEST HILLS 2 – West Hills High pitcher Gavin Kondyra saw another solid performance on the mound go to waste, as surging San Ysidro scored an unearned tie-breaking run in the 5th inning Wednesday (Mar. 14), just enough to nip the Wolf Pack, 3-2, at the border school.

With the victory, the Cougars (4-1) finished second to 6th-ranked Helix in their Foothiller-Aztec Tournament pool. The Wolf Pack (1-4) dropped their third straight.

Kondyra was able to solve every San Ysidro hitter but one. Right-fielder Luis Rivera droved in all three Cougars runs with RBI doubles in the 1st and 3rd innings, then a tie-breaking base hit in the 5th after West Hills moved even with two runs in the 4th.

“A lot of people don’t think I can hit because I’m a skinny guy,” said Rivera, a senior right-fielder. “But I’d like to think I am a pretty good hitter.”

Rivera is also an unheralded pitcher. Earlier in the tournament, he struck out 15 batters in a 1-0 victory over South Bay rival Mater Dei Catholic.

A series of calls may have also gone against the Wolf Pack.

Many observers thought Rivera’s initial double might have been foul. Calls also went against the Pack when San Ysidro stole third base, but it seemed the baserunner slid into the tag, while a West Hills batter Andrew Ritayik put down a nice sacrifice bunt, yet was called out at first base on a bang-bang call.

“If some of those calls go our way, we’re in position to win,” said West Hills coach Mickey Deutschman. “But we made enough mistakes on our own, so that’s where we need to focus our attention.”

The key was a dropped ball on a pick-off attempt, allowing Juan Silva to move into scoring position. Rivera then delivered the two-out, game-winning hit.

Down 2-0, West Hills grouped four straight batters into two quick runs.

Colton Corderman reached on a one-out error, moving into scoring position on a Kondyra double to right field. Both came home on consecutive base hits over second base by Devin Bevilacqua and Kai Dennis.

However, Cougars relief pitcher entered in the 5th to fire three innings of 1-hit ball to collect the victory.





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