East County Sports

D-1: Hillers eliminate top-seeded Saints



ECS staff report

Division 1
Grossmont 7, St. Augustine 6
KEARNY MESA — It seemed like the entire Grossmont Foothillers roster made one importsnt contribution on Friday (May 20), but it added up to eliminate top-seeded St. Augustine, 7-6, inan elimination ballgame in the CIFSDS Division I playoffs.

Grossmont’s bullpen came through after trailing 4-1, as Jacob Lanza fired 4.1 innings from out of the bullpen, followed b a seventh-inning save by Braxton Ohton.

Ohton did allow a basehit to openthe seventh, giving the Saints a chance to forge extra innings. However, the pinch-runner was quickly erased by Hillers catcher Joaquin Baez, who fired a strike to second base.

Ohton then capped the triumph with a strikeout and a lazy fly ball to Noah Barnes in left field.

Trailing 4-1, Grossmont registered four runs in the third to grab the lead for keeps.

A one-out double by Barron Zamora would score Baez (kead walk). Then with two down, Ryan Rodieck slugged a 2-run double to tie the score.

Designated hitter Jose Carranza fllowed with a go-ahead single for what proved to be the game-winning RBI.

An inning later, the Hilles ade it 7-4 on Justin Tucker’s 2-run home, also brining home River Diaz De Leon (Safe on error).

The Saints battled back on a 2-run homer by third baseman Frankie Giacalone in the fifth before Grossmont shut the door.

For the Foothillers, Zamora batted 3-for-4, while Tucker, Barnes and Rodieck added two hits each in an 11-ht attack.

St. Augustine (17-11-2) saw Giacalone, a junior, finish with three RBI.

Division 1

Eastlake 11, Steele Canyon 2
CHULA VISTA — Steele Canyon was albe to cut into an early Eastlake lead, but the Titans closed with nine unanswered runs to hand the Cougars an 11-2 setback in Friday’s (May 20) winners bracket final of the CIFSDS Division I tournament.

The loss forces Steele Canyon into an elimination contest at home against Carlsbad on Saturday at 11 a.m. Both schools need to win three straight in order to gain a berth in the section championship contest.

Eastlake, the defending Open Division titlist, pounded Steele Canyon pitching for seven extra-base hits. Included was a pair of home runs by Ben Melendrez, good for four RBI, while Daniel Mora added another.

Except for a strong throw by Cougars catcher Tommy Molina, who threw out an Eastlake base-runner in the first inning, the Titans could’ve scored in all six trips to the plate.

Melendrez’s first 2-run homer came in the second inning, but Steele Canyon right fielder Taylor Corella countered with his own 2-run shot in the third to pull even. The shot to left field followed an “unintentional intentional” walk to Molina.

Eastlake starting pitcher David Vargas worked five innings for the win, allowing just two basehits with four strikeouts.

The rest of the outing went to the Titans, which will wait for Saturday’s Steele Canyon-Carlsbad winner on Tuesday.


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