East County Sports

Knights’ Casey good on mound, at bat




By Nick Pellegrino
ECS staff writer 

IMPERIAL BEACH – Foothills Christian pitcher Taylor Casey demonstrated that a ballplayer with a surname such as “Casey” doesn’t necessarily mean he’s a slugger

Casey, a diminutive left-hander, who is listed at (maybe) 140 pounds, carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning, gaining the victory in the Knights’ 11-2 verdict over host Mar Vista in Thursday’s (Mar. 25) Sweetwater Tournament contest.

Interestingly, Casey showed he could also utilize a bat, collecting the game-winning RBI. He batted 2-for-3, plus a pair of bases-on-balls.

Casey was given the opportunity to go coast-to-coast in his no-hit bid. However, in his first lengthy outing on the mound since last summer, he tired in the sixth when he yielded his first base hit. it. Still, the junior tossed 5 2/3 stellar innings, striking out nine Mariners against just a single walk to pace the unbeaten Knights (2-0).

Casey needed to be near-perfect early on as Mar Vista starting pitcher Diego Barquin also was also firing a no-hitter. However, the senior came out of the contest after three innings with four strikeouts, but five walks elevated his pitch count.

The scoreless ballgame ended in the fifth when Casey registered a two-out single to bring home senior co-captain Kip Famolaro (hit-by-pitch, to second base on a walk to senior Cameron Nicks. Then the Knights tallied six markers in the sixth, then four more in the seventh to make the decision more lop-sided than it was early on.

The sixth-inning rally was punctuated by a lead double by John Popka, coming around on a Matt Jones single followed by an infield error. which opened the flood gates. Included was a two-run double to right field by Colby Johnson, and a two-run, line single from Colton White.

An inning later, Johnson, a sophomore, took advantage of a leadoff error by tripling home Famolaro. Two walks and a double-play grounder brought in another run, then, freshman Daniel Chalupnik – in his first prep at-bat – singled home Casey to cap the offense.

“It was the Taylor Casey-show,” Foothills Christian head coach Dave Lewis said. “Colby was the hitting star again, though.”

Johnson and White each finished with two hits and three RBI. Johnson also relieved for Casey, registered the final four outs with three strikeouts.

Mar Vista (1-1) will next visit East County on Saturday, meeting host El Cajon Valley at 10:30 a.m., then will again host Foothills Christian in a different tournament game on Monday at 3:30 p.m.


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