Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Chargers Rally to Win in Ten

The Chargers scored twice with two outs in their last at bat.
Zach Alofaituli
Cypress, Calif. - Cypress College pulled off an amazing 9-8 come-from-behind win over El Camino College in the bottom of the tenth inning at home on Tuesday, when Anthony Razo came through in the clutch with a walk-off single that scored Pierce Bily for the game winner.

 The Chargers had their backs against the wall in the bottom of the tenth inning after a fielding miscue allowed El Camino to score the go-ahead run on a dropped routine fly ball that should have been out number three.

Warrior reliever, Michael Heredia came in to close the game for El Camino, and went right to work by putting the first two Cypress hitters down in order. El Camino looked to be in good position to hold on for an 8-7 road victory with Heredia dealing on the mound, but Cypress skipper Scott Pickler had other plans.

When freshman Zach Alofaituli heard his number called to pinch hit with two down, and nobody on base, he made the most of his opportunity to help the team by delivering a double down the left field line that kept Cypress alive. The next man up, Pierce Bily, drove in Alofaituli to tie the game at 8-8 with a hard hit ball to El Camino third baseman, Cole Trezek. Trezek tried to range to his left, but only managed to get close enough to have it bounce off the heel of his glove and roll onto the outfield grass. Alofaituli was running hard on the play, and scored easily from second to get the game back to even. Bily moved into scoring position after stealing second, then Razo delivered one of the biggest hits of his Charger career when his walk-off single to center brought home Bily to lift Cypress to the 9-8 non-conference victory over the Warriors.

Charger reliever Darren Gidley came into the game to pick up a save, but ended up earning his first win of the year after Cypress scored twice in their last at bat to win. Gidley had allowed a run in the ninth that tied the game, and an unearned run in the tenth that gave the Warriors the lead.

El Camino took an early three-run lead in the top of the first inning when Cypress starting pitcher Kyle Ferramola walked the first three batters of the game. One batter later, Pickler made the call to the bullpen for Josh Anderson. Anderson kept the Chargers in position to get back into the game by tossing a solid 3.2 innings of relief, with only one run allowed on three hits and three strikeouts.

Reliever Daniel Poncedeleon was in line for the win after holding the Warriors scoreless in the top of the seventh, before Cypress rallied from three-runs down in the bottom of the inning to take 7-6 lead.

Razo, Jake Clark and Jonthan Torres each finished with two hits on the day. Clark and Torres tied for the team-lead with two RBI's apiece. Parker Starr, Robert Chavarria, Bily and Razo's game winner accounted for the other Cypress RBI's in the game. Dylan Moore scored two runs, while Mike Marcoux, Bily, Razo, Clark, Torres and Starr all crossed the plate one time each. Chavarria and Torres both had big RBI doubles in the game.

The Chargers scored a run in each of the first three innings of the ballgame to battle back to even with the Warriors after spotting them three-runs in the first. El Camino regained the lead in their next at bat with one run in the top of the fourth inning.

The Warriors opened up their second three-run lead of the game in the fifth inning with two more scores that made it a 6-3 contest.

The Cypress bats were silent for the middle three innings, but a pair of singles by Razo and Moore to lead off the bottom of the seventh for the Chargers was just the spark Pickler was looking for. Clark singled in Razo for the first run of the inning, then Torres blasted a two-RBI double down the right field line that tied the game at 6-6. A ground out to third by Starr brought in the Torres to give Cypress its first lead of the game.

El Camino answered back with a run in the ninth to tie, and another in tenth inning to take a one run lead, but Cypress would have the final say in this matchup between two very good teams.

Cypress will host Allan Hancock College for a two-game set beginning this Thursday at 2 p.m. The second game of the series will begin at noon on Saturday. Those two games will be the final non-conference games on Cypress' 2012 schedule before opening the Orange Empire Conference regular season with a road game at Orange Coast next Thursday, March 1 at 2 p.m.

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