Baseball: Last three innings turns game into rout

File Photo: Rollie Nichols hit a mammoth home run in the Falcons 21-0 win
File Photo: Rollie Nichols hit a mammoth home run in the Falcons 21-0 win

Heading into the top of the seventh inning, the Cerritos College baseball team was enjoying a slim 3-0 lead over host Pasadena City College at Brookside Park on Saturday. But in the final three innings, the Falcons (8-12, 3-2) scored 18 runs to post a 21-0 win over the Lancers (10-7, 2-3). The two teams will meet up at Kincaid Field at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

The 21-0 shutout was the biggest by Cerritos since a 30-0 win over Compton College in 1985, and it was the most runs scored in a game since a 24-13 win over Cerro Coso College in 2013. The 21 runs were also the most scored against a Pasadena City team since a 21-7 win during the 1999 season.

The flood of runs started with one out in the seventh inning when freshman Micah Hee (Kamehameha, HI HS) was hit by a pitch and freshman designated hitter Christopher Gomez (South Torrance HS) followed with a bloop single. The bases were loaded after a Jorge Rodriguez (Bellflower HS) single, which set the table for freshman shortstop Ramon Bramasco (Cathedral HS). He doubled in two runs, followed by an RBI single by freshman outfielder Rolando Nichols (Serra HS).

A pair of PCC errors accounted for the next three runs before freshman outfielder Dominic Bravo (Warren HS) drove in the seventh run of the inning with a sacrifice fly.

The eighth inning produced three more runs (all unearned), as freshman catcher Adam Rubio (Montebello HS) drove in a run with a sacrifice fly and sophomore second baseman Derrick Edwards (Mary Star of the Sea HS) hit a deep double, which plated two more runs.

With all the late-inning hitting, the highlight of the game was a monstrous three-run home run from Nichols in the ninth inning, which preceded an RBI double from Rodriguez, his first of three RBI in the inning.

The recipient of the offensive outburst was freshman starting pitcher Gilbert Romero (Alhambra HS), who earned the win after tossing the first seven innings and allowing just four hits while striking out three. Freshmen Edgar Velasquez (Montebello HS) and Joe Pacheco (Redlands East Valley HS) each pitched an inning to complete the shutout.

On the day, the Falcons had 20 hits, with all nine starters collecting at least one hit. Gomez went 4-for-5 with four runs scored at the top of the lineup, with the next two batters - Rodriguez and Bramasco - each adding three hits and three RBI. Nichols drove in a season-best five runs, while Edwards drove in three runs.