East County Sports

Rainy days, Mondays, leave ballclubs down



By Nick Pellegrino
ECS staff writer

EL CAJON — High school coaches in many sports simply despise playing on Mondays for a variety of reasons.

Athletes sometimes lose focus since practices are not allowed on Sundays. Classes are back in session after two days off.

Of course, helps if the team that plays on Monday also wins, so some coaches welcome the opportunity to get their players back on the field/court/etc., sometimes to take advantage of the opponent, sometimes to prepare for an even bigger contest later in the week.

All of these situations occurred among participating East County baseball clubs this Monday (Apr.24), all with mixed results.


ECVHS 15, Bonsall 4
PALA INDIAN RESERVATION — In an interesting scheduling triangle, El Cajon Valley won for the second time in five starts, whipping host Bonsall, 15-4, in non-league action at the brand-new Pala Athletics Center.

The triangle shows Mountain Empire defeating the Braves on Opening Day, but Bonsall tied the RedHawks in an East County 21st Century record 18-18 draw, and now the ECVHS took out the Legionnaires. It demonstrates the rise of the Braves since snapping their 7-game losing streak.

“It was a great win for our guys today,” said head coach Clifton Thomas. “We had a rough stretch over the break and I could tell it was getting to our team.”

Thus, advance planning saw this game with Bonsall added to the schedule.

“To see get back in the win column and bounce back was nice. Hopefully, this will give us some momentum into the final month of the season and we can be playing some more competitive ball.”

More “competitive” ball? Oh, the dirty work: Playoffs!

We’ll get a better idea when the Braves head to Mount Miguel on Tuesday, seeking to break a Grossmont Valley League tie in the standings with the Matadors.

El Cajon Valley obviously saw the offense come together after scoring a season-high 15 runs. The pitching staff yielded just four earned runs.

However, the contest’s highlight ended the contest.

On a bases-loaded single by Bonsall, Braves center field Ruben Cosio charged the ball, but he didn’t come up throwing.

“The ball was hit hard up the middle and Ruben charged hard for the ball,” noted Thomas on the ball that the senior didn’t simply wait to roll to him. “Ruben saw that the (batter-) runner at first base wasn’t paying attention,”

Of course, one Legionnaires run had scored, but not the second one.

“Ruben had such a great jump, he just kept on running and got the tag out at second base to end the game.”

Meanwhile, the runner at third took several steps home, then backed up to third in anticipating of a throw to the plate, thus backing up all the base runners.”

Early on, after the ballclubs exchanged runs in the second inning, the Braves tallied the net 12 straight runs, including a 7-spot in the sixth to mount a 13-1 cushion.

ECVHS recorded 10 hits, including two each from Rikki Ortiz and cleanup hitter Joseph Johnson, and took advantage of nine walks and five errors by the Legionnaires.

Chris Cosio, Ruben’s brother, pitched six innings to garner the victory. He struck out five Bonsall batters. When he reached the pitch limit, Paul Rodriguez Paleyo pitched the seventh inning in a combined 5-hitter.

The Braves moved to 4-11-1. Bonsall (2-9-1) a first-year program, received two hits from senior pitcher/shortstop David Romo.


Temecula Valley 12, Mount Miguel 1
TEMECULA — The only thing that went right for Mount Miguel — following several phone calls — was the umpires did show up for this game after an earlier trip was canceled — following the Matadors’ arrival to SW Riverside County — when no men in blue arrived.

The Golden Bears, leading 2-1, registered 10 unanswered runs — including six runs in the fourth innings — to gain an easy triumph.

The bottom third of the TVHS batting order collected six RBI, including three by Darren Verdugo and a pair by Matt Tylman. Both are seniors.

The Matadors came in the second inning.

Steve Gulley led off and was hit by a pitch. Then with two down, No. 9 hitter Eric Sandoval singled, followed by a walk to David Keller to load the bases.

Johnathan Trader then smacked a line drive off the pitcher — he was okay — for an infield single and the RBI.

Mount Miguel (4-18 overall) did show some promise, not committing an error for just the second time all season.

Temecula Valley moved to 17-8-1; the Go’Bears are 10-2-1 and in second place behind front-running  Vista Murrieta in the CIF-Southern Section’s Southwestern League.


University City 8, Christian 7
EL CAJON — The Christian Patriots intentionally played a tough opponent on the road on Saturday defeating playoff-bound Brawley, 5-1. The contest was supposed to get the ball ready for a 3-game series with University City.

However, nothing really showed that they were ready for a league game with the visiting Centurion, falling to the Centurion, 8-7. The defeat left the Patriots tied in the loss column for first place in the Eastern League.

University City held leads of 6-2 and 8-5 but held on to gain just its sixth victory of the season against a Patriots side just tied the school record for the second-best start.

Christian’s defense was solid, not committing an error.

Among the Patriots’ 10 hits, most went for doubles, including two by Chris Mellos. The others were from Ashton McCurty, Caden Leonard, Shane Bailey and Xavier Farnum.

However, the perceived best segment of the roster — the pitching staff — failed to perform, including four walks, five hit batsmen and 10 hits allowed for 19 total base-runners.

University (6-14-1) now holds third place, now owning upset wins over Christian and Patrick Henry.


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