East County Sports

ROUNDUP: Jeremiah, Nielsen deliver blasts for Pats



EastCountySports.com staff report


EL CAJON – Christian High senior BRAD JEREMIAH hit a walk-off solo home run in the bottom of the eighth inning and teammate GARRET NIELSEN hit a three-run shot to tie the game in the fifth as the Patriots beat Montgomery, 5-4, at the GMC Tournament.

Jeremiah hit his shot to right-center field as the Patriots improved their record to 4-5 and 2-1 in the Grossmont-Metro-City Tournament.

“It was the first pitch of the inning and he threw a fastball a little outside and I didn’t try to do anything fancy just to get a line drive and it just carried over,” Jeremiah said. “This win wasn’t singlehandedly. I couldn’t have done it without my bros. Garret Nielson had a clutch three-run home run to tie it, giving me the opportunity.”

Jeremiah was also doing work on the mound for the Patriots. He pitched 6 2/3 innings, striking out four and walking one.

Sophomore TRACE RAMOS pitched 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief, allowing just a walk and striking out one to earn the victory.

Ramos singled to begin setting the table for Nielsen’s three-run blast.

Sophomore CONNOR OHTON also had a base hit before Nielsen stepped to the plate in the fifth.

Junior OWEN EASLEY walked and scored for the Pats’ first run in the third, while Nielsen also had a double for Christian High.


HELIX 7, MADISON 0 – The fifth-ranked Helix Highlanders scored six runs in the fifth inning and junior JOSIAH ESTRADA pitched six shutout innings in a GMC Tournament matchup of two of the county’s top eight teams in La Mesa Friday afternoon.

“The score was tight from inning two to the fifth, until we scored six, runs which made me even more relaxed,” said the cool  left-hander. “I felt really relaxed and trusted every I pitch threw.”

The Scotties broke it open in the fifth behind four walks and a two-run double by BRANDON PETERSON.

Helix lost a second-straight meeting to highly-ranked Eastlake in the GMC on Wednesday. The teams would have played a third game in the Aztec-Foothiller championship game, however, that game has now been canceled following a rainout last Saturday.

“We can’t let one loss affect us in a negative way,” said the San Jose State-bound Peterson. “Eastlake is a great team and we constantly battle with them so we just came into this game with a positive mindset. Coach (COLE) HOLLAND always tells us to never lose two games in a row or lose at home so we stayed true to that.”

Junior CARLOS OQUITA capped the big rally with a run-scoring single to right. Oquita went 3-for-3 at the plate.

“Every time we play against Madison we know it’s going to be tough,” Oquita said. “They got some good arms and hitters. Our pitching was great today and our offense was making solid contact which led us to get a dub.

Highlander junior reliever ERICK SMELKO induced a fly out to finish off the game after striking out the first two batters in the seventh.

Helix opened up scoring in the second inning when senior ZACK OWENS hit a solo homer.

“I thought we took some really good team approaches today offensively,” Holland said. “We hit all of the balls hard. We stuck to a plan for the most part. We played really good defense and got a real good outing from Josiah who competed from pitch-to-pitch.”

Estrada surrendered no runs on five hits, striking out four and walking one.

“My main focus from start to finish was to get ahead in the count,” Estrada said. “To be ahead in the count makes my confidence rise and makes me stronger throughout each batter.

“My off-speed, especially my changeup was working good for me today. My team picked me up throughout every inning, which helped me stay focused and more confident on the mound. Another goal I had was to stay away from walks. Staying from walks helps stay away from earned runs.”

Helix will next host Elk Grove in the Lions Tournament opener on Monday at 2. The Thundering Herd (2-0-2) are ranked eighth in the state.

“Elk Grove is a very good team,” Oquita said. “I’m excited to go out there and compete against them. It will be a good game one to watch.”



GRANITE HILLS 4, BONITA VISTA 2 – Senior TREVOR HAZELHURST homered and doubled for two RBI, while senior BRADLEY HARRIS drove in a pair of runs and earned the win with 6 1/3 innings pitched as the Eagles beat Bonita Vista in the Bill Dickens-Gordon Thompson bracket of the Grossmont-Metro-City Tournament on Friday afternoon.

The Eagles remained red-hot with their fourth-straight win and third-consecutive victory in the GMC.

Harris lasted 6 1/3 innings, allowing six hits and two runs while striking out one and walking none.

“Brad Harris did a great job for us today,” Granite Hills head coach JAMES DAVIS said. “Hopefully, it gives some good momentum going into the Lions tournament.”

After Bonita Vista got on the board in the first inning, Harris took matters into his own hands in the bottom half of the frame, delivering a two-run line single to left.

“In the off-season, coach Davis was willing to work with me on hitting and it does seem to be paying off,” said Harris, who is hitting a team-leading .458 wtih 14 RBI. “We have been able to win consecutive games by having good pitching, solid defense, and timely hitting. We have been able to put it all together as a team. I think we are playing well enough to win this tournament, and that’s exciting.”

In the top of the second inning, Bonita Vista tied things up at 2-apiece.

In the third, Hazelhurst lifted his solo homer to right.

In the fifth, Hazelhurst’s double to right drove in SEAN MCGREW (1-2, walk, 2 runs scored).

Senior JAKE FENN threw two-thirds of an inning in relief out of the bullpen to notch the save.

The Eagles meet West Linn (Ore.) in their Lions Tournament opener at 11 a.m. at home on Monday.


GROSSMONT 4, SCRIPPS RANCH 0 – Grossmont senior right-hander CHRIS GIOVENGO had a good time on Friday afternoon, allowing just three hits over six innings and drove in a run as the 10th-ranked Foothillers blanked visiting Scripps Ranch in the Grossmont-Metro-City Tournament on Friday afternoon.

“It was a blast on the mound and before the game,” Giovengo said. “The team had great energy that I could feed off of. My mindset on the mound was to get ahead early, throw strikes, and let my defense work for me.

Giovengo struck out six and walked two.

“Curveball wasn’t working to my liking today, but when I needed to, I was able to locate the fastball,” said Giovengo, who already has notched his third win of the season.

Senior AUSTIN ODOM (2-for-3) drove in a pair of runs with a base hit in the fourth inning, putting Grossmont on the board.

Senior TYLER PARENT threw a scoreless ninth and struck out the final batter to finish off the game.

Senior JESSE GARCIA went 2-for-3 and scored a run for Grossmont.

“It was a nice bounce-back win for us today,” Grossmont coach JORDAN ABRUZZO said. “Chris set the tone early and gave us a chance to win. We got some timely hits and executed today when we needed to.”

The Foothillers face Clackamas (Ore.) at noon in the Lions Tournament.


VALHALLA 3, POINT LOMA 1 – Four Valhalla pitchers combined to help the visiting Norsemen beat 15th-ranked Point Loma in the GMC Tournament on Friday for their second win in three tourney outings.

Senior COLE HOWARD got the win going four innings and picked up Valhalla’s first RBI with a bases-loaded HBP in the third inning, while sophomore KYLE CASPER added an RBI single in the third.

Casper singled on the first pitch of his at-bat in the third, driving in the second run.

Point Loma got a run in the second on a sac fly.

Howard allowed four hits and no runs while striking out one and walking one.

Sophomore JOSEPH INGRASSIA drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth, scoring junior ETHAN DUNNAM (walk).

Senior EVAN APPLEBAUM notched two-thirds of an inning of scoreless relief for Valhalla.

Valhalla will face state 17th-ranked Rocklin (5-0) in a game played at Bonita Vista High in a Lions Tournament opener on Monday at 2 p.m.


MONTE VISTA 4, CASTLE PARK 3 – Freshman ERNIE ARAMBULA singled home the game-winning run with one out in the bottom of the eighth inning, while teammate sophomore ABRAHAM SANCHEZ pitched an eight-inning complete game as Monte Vista beat Castle Park, 4-3, in the GMC Tournament on Friday.

Arambula singled on the first pitch of the at-bat, as the scorching Monarchs won their fourth-straight and improved to 6-2 overall.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Monte Vista tied things up at 3-all when DERRICK WILEY hit a sac fly, scoring Arambula (single).

Sanchez threw 106 pitches, including 77 for strikes, allowing eight hits while striking out seven.

The Trojans took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third, but Monte Vista senior ISAAC GONZALEZ singled on a liner to center to score freshman JACOB SAVOY (double). One batter later, the Monarchs tied the game on an error.

Castle Park took a 3-2 lead in the top of the fourth.

Monte Vista will host Southwest (El Centro) in its Lions Tournament opener on Monday at 3.


MAR VISTA 5, MOUNT MIGUEL 3 – The host Matadors ran up against a hot Mariner squad in a GMC Tournament game.

Mar Vista led with a run in the, but Mount Miguel took the lead in the bottom of the third as junior AUSTIN ORTIZ and senior JOSEPH MENDOZA both singled and eventually came around to score.

After the Mariners tied the game in the fourth, the Matadors re-took the lead in the bottom of the inning on a two-out double by freshman JOJO CASTILLO, which brought home NICO CAMACHO (walk).

“We stood toe to toe with a 7-1 team for 5 innings,” Mount Miguel coach FRANK COIT said. “CAMERON BEAUZEC – in his first start on the hill this year – was excellent. He made one mistake and Mar Vista’s four-hitter did not miss it.

Mar Vista’s Jake Borst hit the two-run home run that probably went close to 400-feet, a no-doubter by the senior.

Mount Miguel came close to tying the game in the last of the sixth with a double by sophomore JULIUS HARRIS and a single by sophomore ERIK KELLY, but Mariner OF Joel Castellon threw out the runner at home.

“Again, the team played well and played very hard,” Coit said. “We were just a couple of miscues away on this one. More progress today. Our kids are gaining confidence steadily right now, all good. It’s early, a few close losses are actually great teaching moments.”

Mount Miguel will open the Lions Tournament by playing Washington High (2-6), of San Francisco, on Monday at noon.


ST. AUGUSTINE 7, SANTANA 5 – A day after the passing of Santana baseball coaching legend JERRY HENSON, Sultan junior BRANDON GLOWACKI drove in three runs with a double but Saints’ purple and gold won out over the home team’s royal shades in Santee at the GMC Tournament.

After the Saints took a 4-1 lead with three in the top of the fourth, the Sultans put up another one of their big frames to tie the game in the bottom half of the inning on Glowacki’s bases-clearing hit.

Santana tied things up at four when TC SIMMONS doubled on a 2-1 count, bringing home Glowacki.

“It felt great to be back out on the field,” Simmons said. “Since I was out, getting a couple of hits this game has given me some of my confidence back. I wouldn’t be able to be in this spot without my teammates. They have supported me throughout and pushed me to be the very best.”

St. Augustine came right back with three in the top of the fifth to regain control.

Senior JAKE SARGENT doubled home Simmons to bring Santana to within 7-5 in the last of the sixth.

Santana junior BEN HART doubled in the bottom of the seventh to bring the tying run to the plate with two out.

Senior JOSH ODEWALDT had three hits for Santana, which competes in the Lions Tournament Premier Division next week.


PATRICK HENRY 6, STEELE CANYON 3 – SC junior BILL TELLOUS went 3-for-3 with a walk an RBI and two runs scored, but the Patriots won at the GMC Tournament.

Steele Canyon also got RBI from sophomore ANTHONY MATA in the first inning and senior LUKE ARIAS in the third.

After the Patriots took a 3-1 lead in after two innings, Steele Canyon tied the game with two runs in the top of the third.

Tellous double on a line shot to right with two outs, driving home JOSH ESQUIBEL (walk). Tellous scored on Arias’ single to center.

Steele Canyon will host Crespi (3-8), of Encino, on Monday at noon in the Lions Tournament.


EASTLAKE 16, EL CAPITAN 1 – The Titans’ GRANT HOLMAN homered and Eastlake took out some frustration on the host Vaqueros in Lakeside in a Dickens’ GMC Tournament contest.

Senior STEVIE MONTEJANO had a couple of hits for El Capitan, while junior teammate AUSTIN BELL drove him home on a sacrifice fly.

Eastlake led just 1-0 after two innings, but scored five in the third.

The Vaqueros host California High, of Whittier, on Monday at noon in a Lions Tournament matchup.



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