Baseball: Falcons pull away for 7-3 win

Vincent Fuentes earned the win with 2 1/3 innings of relief
Vincent Fuentes earned the win with 2 1/3 innings of relief

Locked in a 3-3 tie with visiting Palomar College on Tuesday, the Cerritos College baseball team scored four times in the bottom of the sixth inning to come away with a 7-3 win. The victory improved the Falcons record to 9-2 on the year, while the Comets fell to 6-5. On Wednesday, the team will travel to Glendale College to complete their suspended game from February 1 and then played their scheduled game. The teams were tied, 5-5 heading into the top of the 10th inning.

In the four-run sixth inning, freshman catcher Andre Alvarez (Walnut HS) led off with a base hit. Sophomore shortstop Ramon Bramasco (Cathedral HS), looking to bunt Alvarez over, beat the throw to first base after his successful bunt for an infield single. Palomar pulled starting pitcher Kevin Palm in favor of Kenneth LaPierre and he gave up an RBI infield single to sophomore second baseman Jesus Mercado (St. John Bosco HS). The The runners advanced a base on a passed ball and then freshman first baseman Michael Gonzalez (St. Bernard HS) singled up the middle, and through the outstretched legs of Mercado at second base, for an RBI. also on the play, the ball rolled past Palomar centerfielder Marco Young, which allowed Mercado to score. The final run of the inning came on a fly ball to Elijah Thomas in left field from freshman outfielder Gabriel Gonzalez (Santa Fe HS). Thomas appeared to get his cleats caught in the grass going for the ball, which dropped and allowed Mike Gonzalez to scor

Sophomore starting pitcher Valentin Flores-Gomez (Gahr HS) battled through several innings, as the leadoff hitter reached ball in four of the first six innings. An unearned run came home in the third inning for Palomar and when they put runners on first and second base with two outs in the top of the sixth inning, sophomore Vincent Fuentes (El Rancho HS) was called to come in and pitch in relief. Fuentes surrendered a two-run triple on the first pitch to Young, but limited the Comets to a pair of singles to start the seventh inning. After getting Jacob Thompson to ground out, Fuentes struck out the next two batters to end the threat.

Fuentes (1-1), who earned the win, was relieved himself after allowing a leadoff walk in the ninth inning. Sophomore Edgar Velasquez (Montebello HS) gave up a single to the first batter he faced, but recorded three straight outs, with two of them being called third strikes, to end the game and earn him his second save of the year.

Sophomore outfielder Nick Penzetta (Kamehameha, HI HS) got the Falcons on the board in the bottom of the second inning with a two-out, two-run single that plated both Mike Gonzalez and freshman designated hitter Eric Winchester (Diamond Bar HS). In the bottom of the third inning, sophomore outfielder Rollie Nichols (Serra HS) drove a shot over the outstretched glove of Austen Salcedo and ricochet off  the fence. After getting knocked to the ground, Nichols was able to race around the bases for an inside the park home run.

Photos by Daryl Peterson