East County Sports

VALLEY: Cougars in first; El Cap wins


EastCountySports.com staff report

RANCHO SAN DIEGO – The Steele Canyon Cougars aren’t playing the waiting game when it comes to the Grossmont Valley League race this season.

The host Cougars tallied six times in the first inning and had accumulated 12 runs by the third frame to quickly take out the Matadors, 13-5 in Grossmont Valley League action on Wednesday (Mar. 27).

Patient Steele Canyon moved into first place by a half-game over three teams with the win, improving to 2-0 in the league.

Cougars senior Gabe Vidana, a corner outfielder who served as designated hitter, who had driven in just a single run all season, posted a career day with five RBI, highlighted by clearing the loaded bases with a double in the 1st. The No. 8 hitter in the Cougars order went 2-for-2 with a pair of walks.

The double capped a 6-run rally to outset a pair of Mount Miguel runs to open the ballgame.

“One of those humbling days baseball puts on you sometimes after a great outing,” Mount Miguel head coach Frank Coit said. Everything (we) threw, Steele hit hard, very hard. The Cougars squared up a lot of balls to their credit.

An inning later, a line single to center field scored two additional runs, giving Vidana his 5 RBI in less than two innings of work.

Meanwhile, the 2-3-4 hitters from Steele Canyon also did well.

Eli Page went 3-for-3 with 3 runs and an RBI, Billy Tellous batted 2-for-4 with 4 RBI, and cleanup hitter Carlos Camacho batted 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI — composite 7-for-10 (.700) to drive in seven runs.

Mount Miguel (3-9 overall, 1-2 GVL) received three hits from third baseman Erik Kelly.

“I went up there with the intent to hit the ball as hard as I can and I did that,” Kelly said.

Mount Miguel’s Trevor Darby and Thomas Ringer added two hits each, as six of the top seven members of the Matadors batting card registered base hits.

“I Just went up there with a line drive mindset and I ended up poking a couple balls in the gap,” Darby said.

Darby and Ringer, who started the game, shared the pitching chores against the hard-hitting Cougs.

“We are all hitting well and just not getting timely hits,” Ringer said. “We have hit even the hardest pitching in the league and have gotten hits.  

“I believe we need to start believing who we are and how we can play.”

Steele Canyon (7-5) has now won four straight.

Coit said that senior Nico Camacho will start on Friday.

“I expect him to compete hard like he always does and give us a strong outing,” Coit said. “I told the boys, compete hard, win or lose, and it will pay dividends later.

“The good thing we can take away from this game is we competed hard right to the end. We left a lot of base runners on, but of course, we got a lot of base runners on, a real positive.

“Trevor Darby came on in relief and pitched well. He will be a real asset on the hill as the season progresses.”

EL CAPITAN 16, EL CAJON VALLEY 6:  At Hostetler Field in Lakeside, the visiting Braves registered five runs in the 2nd inning to pull even at 6-all, but the Vaqueros closed with 10 unanswered runs to win their Grossmont Valley League opener following a first-week bye.

El Capitan (3-8 overall, 1-0 GVL) saw four different players — Jacob Mackin, Dom Baker, Wes Buckner and Larry Snow — drive in two runs each, while late-inning substitute Brandon Williams hit a solo home run to pace a 14-hit attack.

El Cajon Valley (1-6-1, 0-2 GVL) saw three walks load the bases. Then with two out, four consecutive Braves — Greg Sanchez, Aaron Rodriguez, Samuel Barranza, Saul Castillo — each registered RBI singles, then Daniel Soto walked with the bases loaded for another RBI to tie the contest.

The Vaqueros quickly regained the lead, when Snow reached on an error, then Buckner slugged an RBI double.

Later in the 6th, Jake Pfitzner smacked a lead double, followed by Williams’ homer, clinching the victory for reliever Charles Rodriguez, who fired 4.1 frames of shutout ball by allowing just three hits and moving to with a half-game of GVL leading Steele Canyon.

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