Baseball: Falcons squeeze out 2-1 win

Cerritos scored the game-winning run on a suicide squeeze bunt
Cerritos scored the game-winning run on a suicide squeeze bunt

On Saturday, the Cerritos College baseball team was able to squeeze out a 2-1 South Coast Conference win over visiting Rio Hondo College. Trailing 1-0 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning, the Falcon (6-11) scored two unearned runs, with the eventual game-winning run coming on a suicide squeeze bunt.

Freshman outfielder Dominic Bravo (Warren HS) led off the inning with an infield single and advanced to second base when Roadrunner third baseman Tony Rosario threw the ball away on the play. Freshman Rolando Nichols (Serra HS) tied the game with a base hit down the right field line, which caused a pitching change. After a passed ball moved Nichols to second base, Rio Hondo (9-5) brought in Jake Gaudet. He was called for a balk, which advanced Nichols to third base.

With one out, freshman first baseman Jesus Mercado (St. John Bosco HS) laid down a perfect sacrifice squeeze bunt that plated Nichols, which turned out to be the game-winning run.

Freshman starting pitcher Gilbert Romero (Alhambra HS) earned his first collegiate win, as he tossed 7 1/3 solid innings, allowing one run (unearned) and scattered six hits. After Cerritos took the lead, Romero allowed consecutive one-out singles, which brought in freshman Joe Pacheco (Redlands East Valley HS). He got the Falcons out of the inning when he got Rosario to ground into a double play to end the threat. Pacheco earned his first save of the season.

Bravo and freshman third baseman Jorge Rodriguez (Bellflower HS), who made a spectacular defensive play in the ninth inning, both had two hits on the day.

The Falcons, who will play at Mt. San Antonio  College at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, are now 4-4 in one-run games this season.

Photos by Daryl Peterson