East County Sports

Braves stealing bases and hearts



ECS Staff report

EL CAJON — The statistics may be, frankly, sad — for example, no league titles since 1979 — but when El Cajon Valley is placed into a competitive situation with programs at its own level, the Braves can find success.

And the Braves, champion of at least three Lions Tournament division titles over the past 15 years, proved it again by downing host Crawford High, 8-3, in Wednesday’s (Apr. 13) pool-play finale.

There had been talk about ECVHS joining the City Conference in a league with clubs like the Colts, along with Hoover, Lincoln and Canyon Hills (Serra), among others, but administration minds always seem to change at the very last minute.

And since the Braves meet so many of these clubs already in non-league contests — and with some success — it’s safe to say they would finish in the upper-half of such a league, which would a first this century.

There is also a rumor about a possible proposal for Foothills Christian to join the Grossmont Conference, if only on a temporary basis, similar to when Christian High played as part of GUHSD way back in 1979-80. Thus, there is precedent.

If Foothills joined, the Grossmont Conference could look much like the Metropolitan Conference (South Bay) with three leagues (instead of two), each gaining an automatic CIFSDS playoff berth.

If the transfer occurs and ECVHS does “belong to the city” (as the song goes), the Grossmont’s district can divide into leagues of five teams each (similar to the alignment before Steele Canyon opened its doors), or into a 4/6 alignment, which has worked well in the North County for more than 40 years (but in three leagues).

With either proposal, such consideration would benefit El Cajon Valley — unless a proposal from the High Tech High group of charter schools is accepted and the campus because a technical school.

But that’s another story.

ECVHS 8, Crawford 3

EL CERRITO — Rikki Ortiz smashed a 2-run double, then Chris Cosio belted a run-scoring single as part of his three RBI outing, leading the Braves to a 4-run, second-inning rally and a victory over the host Will C. Crawford High, 8-3, at the Colts’ corral on Wednesday (Apr. 13).

The triumph snapped a 7-game losing streak; the last win also came against Crawford, 14-1, in almost a month (Mar, 17).

Cosio batted 2-for-4 with two runs and a stolen base, while brother Ruben Cosio, registered three base thefts.

Luis Hernandez and Joseph “J.J,” Johnson also posted two hits for the Braves.

Chris Cosio was also the winning pitcher, striking out 10 Colts batters in his complete-game effort. He walked just two and only two of the runs were earned.

El Cajon Valley (3-8-1) finished with nine stolen bases, including four by Johnson, which is believed to be one short of the school record set by current head coach Clifton Thomas.

The (metro) East County record of 6 is shared, shared by:

— Frank Carey, Granite Hills vs. Monte Vista (5/18/83);
— Larry Simms, Helix vs. Monte Vista (1984); and,
— Robert Cannon, Mt. Miguel vs. Grossmont (4/12/85).

The CIF San Diego Section mark is 8, set by — Mike Oertly of Borrego Springs (vs. Lutheran, 5/10/95); followed by a 7 by many including Ryan Sawyer, Mountain Empire (vs. Vincent Memorial, 5/23/18).

El Capitan 12, Foothills Christian 6
LAKESIDE — Another slow start by the El Capitan pitching staff was countered by 5.2 innings od solid relief by Brody McAuliffe. The senior allowed just one unearned run, giving the offense time to recover in a 12-6 decision over visiting Foothills Christian, Wednesday (Apr. 13) at Hostetler Field.

The Knights leaped to a 5-0 advantage before the Vaqueros could swing their bats, but they fought back on four extra-bases hits, including a grand slam and a double by Cole Winsor.

Winsor’s slam capped the scoring in the sixth, but there must more offense before the exclamation point in a 6- run, sixth-inning rally to break open a 6-5 lead.

Foothills Christian started with a pair of singles and a ground out for a 1-0 lead. Then the El Cap pitching imploded.

The next six batters went walk, RBI single by Seth Gilbody, then four batters were hit by a pitch, which seems like a record by no such marks are kept.

The comeback saw an RBI double by Clayton Brown, a two-run singles by Jett Hayes, then an error allowed the go-ahead run to come home in the third.

For the contests, nine batters were hit by a pitch, including three by El Cap’s Bradley Larsen 3.

West Hills 5, Oceanside 1
SANTEE — Second baseman Braden Smith drove in a pair of runs as West Hills registered three runs in the sixth inning to surf over Oceanside, 4-1, in Lions Tournament action Wednesday (Apr. 13) at Wolf Pack Park.

No other information was reported.

Maranatha Christian 12, Valhalla 10
RANCHO SAN DIEGO — Less than 24 hours after taking advantage if an opponent’s fading bullpen, the same thing happened to the Valhalla Norsemen.

In fact, both sides ran out of juice, but Maranatha Christian, located on the west side of Interest-15 from Rancho Bernardo, did a touch better with two runs in the sixth, then five runs in the seventh for a 12-10 verdict.

Valhalla (7-12 overall) entered the seventh with a 7-6 lead after scoring twice in the sixth to assume the lead, but Maranatha Christian (9-11) answered.

In the seventh, MCHS second baseman Noah Ruiz stroke a 2-run double for a 12-8 advantage. Valhalla catcher Mace Wheeler answered by drilling a two-run double to bring the potential game-tying run to the plate with one down. However,m the Eagles turned a game-ending double play to win it.

For Maranatha Christian, the leaders of the Pacific League, shortstop Nico Newhan registered a double and four RBI, by going 5-for-5 at the plate. Ruiz went 3-for-5.

San Dieguito 12, Monte Vista 2
ENCINITAS — The Dieguito Mustangs, trailing 1-0 after a half-inning, answered with 11 consecutive runs to run-rule visiting Monte Vista, 12-2, in the schools’ Lions Tournament finale.

Monarchs pitchers David Rodriguez and Jacob Schweizer pitched well but were busted for eight unearned runs.

Taking advantage of the shaky defense was San Dieguito cleanup batter Cal Pederson, who collected six RBI, including a grand slam in the first inning.

Tyler Howard added a two-run homer in the fourth to push the advantage to 6-1.

For Monte Vista (6-13 overall), Rodriguez also led the offense with two hits and an RBI.

Two of the seven hits by the Monarchs, losers of four straight, were doubles from Izmael Ocampo and Jacob Schweize.

San Dieguito (9-8) alo received three RBI from late-inning substitute Brendan Alvarez.

Mission Bay 16, Mount Miguel 1 (6 inn.)
SPRING VALLEY — The scoreless pitchers’ duel turned into a one-sided affair after the Mission Bay Buccaneers tallied 16 runs over their final three trips to the plate in Lions Tournament play on Wednesday (Apr. 13).

Down 4-0, the lone Matadors run saw designated hitter Davis Keller stroke a lead single in the fourth.

Keller recorded the first of two second bases then advanced to third when the defender let the throw fly past his glove, scoring on a basehit by shortstop Julian Lopez.

However, the Bucs answered with seven runs in the fifth, then five more in the sixth (and final) inning.

Mount Miguel (4-13) has dropped 12 straight since a 24-1 whipping of Hoover. The Matadors will play a fourth Lions ballgame by host the 10-10 Nevada Union Miners (Grass Valley, Calif.) at noon Thursday.

Sacramento-McClatchy 10, Ramona 6 (8 inn.)
RAMONA — The Ramona Bulldogs learned first hand why the Lions Tournament is so difficult to win.

Playing their third game is as many days, the Dawgs bullpen faded late after McClatchy High Lions of Sacrament scored four times in the 8th inning to lout-last their hosts, 10-6, on Wednesday (Apr. 13).

After the Lions (13-1) scored three times in the seventh to force extra innings.

According to a pair of book-keeping websites, the first run of the eighth was scored on intentional walks — doubtful, but both “books”  scored it that way — then the next batter drew a bases-loaded walk, followed by a two-run double from late-inning substitute Brandon Silva.

With the win, McClatchy started a new winning streak. They had been 13-0 until falling to Otay Ranch on Tuesday.


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