by Cerwin D. Haynes
(photos by Adrian Nevarez)
East Los Angeles College (3-14, 1-5) has struggled mightily over the past few weeks, as injuries to top players have taken a toll on the team's pitching, fielding and hitting. But with the score tied at four in the sixth inning, the Huskies came alive with game-changing plays in the field and at the plate, and would go on to defeat the Seahawks (8-9, 2-2) 8-4.
The top of the aforemention inning saw two successful pickoff plays: with one out and Harbor DH Jacob Villareal aboard first, reliever Joseph Campos caught Villareal leaning too far from the bag and the snap throw to first tagged the runner before he could finish diving back. Second baseman Jovanny Saldanna would reach on a single, but he met the same fate as his teammate, getting caught diving back late to first as Campos and first baseman Juan Guardado connected again on the throw, catch and tag.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Huskies would load the bases on two singles and a hit-by-pitch. With one out, starting pitcher and DH Steven Villagran would deliver a tie-breaking RBI-single to right, followed by another RBI-single by Guardardo, which was followed by a sac-fly RBI by Noah Nieto. Four hits, an HBP and a sac-fly netted three runs and the lead for the Huskies. An insurance run was tacked on in the eighth by Villegran via another RBI single.
Joseph Campos (W, 1-1) got the win in relief, pitching four scoreless innings with six hits and four strikeouts. Erik Herrera (L, 1-1) took the loss.
- Villagran made his first start since coming off of injury. He pitched five innings, giving up three hits and four runs (three were earned) while walking six and recording four strikeouts. He did help his team's cause at the plate, going 4-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
- He also went 4-5 in yesterday's 10-9 loss to Harbor.
- Along with his two putouts via pickoff during the sixth inning, Guardado went 2-4 with a walk, a run scored and two RBIs for the game.
- Second baseman Luis Rojas hit 2-3 with a run scored.
- Before yesterday's 10-9 loss to Harbor, ELAC had averaged slightly over two runs per game in their previous 12 games (25 runs over that span). The Huskies scored 17 runs between last night and today.
- East Los is back in Monterey Park on Tuesday to take on the Moorpark College Raiders at 5pm.