East County Sports

Wild Western race; Hot Hillers bullpen



Compiled by Nick Pellegrino
ECS Senior writer

Western League

Point Loma 7, St. Augustine 1

KEARNY MESA – A glance at the Western League standings finds nearly every ballclub at the .500 plateau — except one; it wasn’t the team many people thought about.

Welcome to the top spot the Point Loma Pointers under former Santana coach Rigo Ledezma, which captured their season series with powerful St. ugustine by smasjing the Saints, 7-1, Friday (Apr. 19) at Hickman Field.

Pointers junior pitcher Mathew Garrison carried a shutout into the seventh nning, but allowed a late run before coming out. But with a comfortable lead, Point Loma (12-5-3 overall) moved to 3-0-1 in league under Ledezma.

There is a three-way deadlock for secnd between Christian, Cathedral Catholic and the Saints at 2-2, followed by Madison (1-2-1)and Patrick Henry (1-3).

Christian 4, Madison 1

EL CAJON – Christian Patriots pitcher Brody Gundert yielded five hits and a walk with Madison runners on base almost eveyr inning, ywt escaped many jams tolead the hosts to a 4-1 decision over the Warhawks in a key Western League affir.

With a setback, Christian would’ve been tied for last place. Instead, they are in a logjam for the second place, sitting in second place in the closest baseball race in the San Diego Section.


Gundert recorded six strikeouts against the Warhawks, with the lone run allowed c oming in the third inning to lock the contest at 1-all.


However, the Patriots scored three runs in their final at-bat in the sixth inning to gain the triumph.


Freshman Braeden Casey paced the offense with two hits and an RBI to post the original lead on his double tocnter field. Benji Molina scored.

Then in the sixth, Peter Zacharzuk and Xavier Farnum.

With Molina on first base with a lead single, Casey lined a basehit to center,but Madison elected to throw behnd the lead runner and nailed Casey at second base, but Molina was in scoring position with only one out.

The choice by the Warhawks then back-fired when Zacharzuk sent an RBI single to left for whatturned out to be the game-winning hit.

A dropped third strike scored the insurance run, then Farnum capped the rally with another RBI basehit.

Cathedral Catholic 11, Patrick Henry 4

CARMEL HIGHLANDS – Except for a 6-0 loss to a Top Ten program in Torrey Pines, the pitching staff for Patrick Henry had ranked among the best in the San Diego Section.

However, since Western Leaguecompeititiopn began, what happened to the Patriots arms

Despite a 3-1 win over Cathedral Catholic earlier in the week, the Dons marched back to hand Patrick Henry its biggest loss of the season in an 11-4 whpping at Manchester Field.

The Dons’ Noah Tenbrook and Diezel Hernandez both posted two-run doubles to forge to the lead.

Cathedral eld a 3-2 after the first inning, then posted seven runs in the third en route to the romp.

For the Patriots (16-6 overall), no one reached double figures in hits, runs or RBI. The best uting was a doube and a run scored by sophomore Alex Mestman.


Grossmont Hills League

Grossmont 6, Santana 0

FLETCHER HILLS in EL CAJON – Foothillers pitcher Elias Burlaza fired five innings of
shutout ball, sending the Foothillers to a 6-0 verdict over visiting Santana on Friday’s (Apr. 19) Grossmont Hills League ballgame at historic Gizoni Field.

Burlaza , who hasn’t pitched in more than three weeks, yielded just four hits and only a single one walk. Relievers Ty Instone and Sebastian Busby followed with one perfect inning each to gain holds to preserve the verdict.

The bullpen of Grossmont (10-11 overall, 5-1 GHL) has led the ballclubs to five straight victories. They have gone 5.2 innings of perfect baseball, In addition, they have gone 7.1 innings without yielding a run over the seven games since the Lions Tournament, all on a mere four hits.

Om offense, Grossmont tallied four runs in the third inning to mount a five-run cushion.

Included was a two-run double by Brady Mesko, who has RBI in three of his five starts since joining the varsity. Mesko is batting .400 over his last three appearances.

Burlaza also scored twice to support his pitching.

The loss was especially troublesome for Santana (4-15) which joined Steele Canyon as the only GHL teams below .500 in league play Plus, the Sultans still face front-running Graniye Hills three times over the final weeks of the season.


Grossmont Valley League

El Capitan 9, Monte Vista 1

LAKESIDE – El Capitan salvegdes a slpit of its Grossmont Valley League opening series by whipping Monte Vista 9-1,at Hostetler Field.

The setback was the first of the season for the Monarchs, dropping them a half-game behind Valhall ans West Hills.

Vaqueros pitcher Brody McAuliffe was only stopped by the pitch count, going 6.1 frames before being forced from the mound. McAuliffe struck out eight Monarchs batters with the run being unearned, then Evin Padilla (Jr) entered to register the final two outs.

Much like the first meeting, the score remain close throughout. However, El Cap blew it open with five runs in the sixth inning.

Dominic Jones and Deegan Brumfield hammered home runs for the Vaq Attack.

West Hills 8, at Mount Miguel 

SPRING VALLEY – On the surface, maybe West Hills should’ve lost.

The Wolf Pack collected just seven singles without an extra-base hit, then commited four errors on defense. Still, skipped over the host Matadors in GVL action.

Braeden Steveson posted two hits and a pair of RBI, then scored a run, as West Hills took a 4-0 lead, then pumped the margin to 8-1 moments after Mount Miguel finally reached the scoreboard.

John Leija also scored twice, cominb home in 11 of 17 contests this season.

A trio of Matadors — James Cibrian, Matt Barton and Alfredo Rodriguez — alll collected two hits, but the combo could only muster a pair of runs after Mount Miguel stranded 10 baserunners despute a pair of RBI by Rodriguez.

“A-Rod” also pitched some late relief, firing 3.2 innings of shutout ball on just two hits.

West Hills (7-11 overall, 2-0 GVL) has defeated Mount Migel (9-10, 0-3 GVL) in 13 straight, last dropping a series contest in 2017. The Pack is tied for first with Valhalla at 2-0.

Valhalla 15, ECVHS 0

RANCHO SAN DIEGO – Let’s skip the ballgame and talk about… the Valhalla scorekeeper.

According to “the book” for the home side, the Norsemen allowed four hits to visiting El Cajon Valley, Meanwhile, the Braves reported they registered just two basehits.

So kudos to Orange Nation for not running up the score, the statistics, etc.

Just remember: just lime Mount Miguel (among others) in recent years, should ECVHS endure the Grossmont Valley League season, they should be among the ranked ballclubs for the CIFSDS Division 5 playoffs.

Meanwhile, Valhalla 12-6 overall) became the last remaining unbeaten ballclub in GVL play at 2-0.