COD Baseball opens 2018 with hot start, falls late to the Huskies, 8-4

COD Baseball opens 2018 with hot start, falls late to the Huskies, 8-4

COD (0-1) opened the 2018 season on a beautiful winter day in the Coachella Valley, breaking the game wide open early in the first with a 3 run outburst, but a couple of key plays sparked a rally for the visiting East Los Angeles Huskies (1-0) and the home side fell, 8-4.

The Roadrunners welcomed in new head coach Chris Walters with an easy top of the first and then an explosive bottom half of the inning as Desert plated three runs in the half inning. Freshman left fielder and leadoff hitter Joshua Hernandez (Palm Desert H.S.) clobbered an infield hit to the short stop and moved to second when sophomore short stop Jerred Soriano (Honolulu (HI) Moanalua) was plunked for a hit by pitch.

Sophomore third baseman Nick Follett (Toronto (ONT) Bishop Allen Academy) hit a bunt to third, advancing the runners and freshman first baseman Jonathan Mejia (Palm Desert H.S.) grabbed the first RBI of 2018 when he hit a sacrifice bunt to score Hernandez from third base, giving the Roadrunners a 1-0 lead.

Freshman catcher Brian McKenna (Mississauga (ONT) Lorne Park Secondary) would follow up that effort with a double to left, scoring Soriano and freshman right fielder Nathaniel Lopez (Palm Desert H.S.) singled to left to score McKenna, to give Desert a 3-0 lead. The next two batters reached base after being hit by pitches, but even though the bases were loaded with two out, no one was able to advance as the ninth batter of the inning for the Roadrunners grounded out to the pitcher to end the inning.

The Huskies would score two runs in the top of the third on an error by the Roadrunners short stop and then tie the game in the top of the sixth on an error by the Desert right fielder. East Los Angeles would open up the throttle on their offense in the top half of the seventh, with a three run outburst of their own. A one out walk and back-to-back stolen bases, turned a standard single into an RBI and then a bases loaded hit by pitch followed immediately after by a wild pitch scored two more, giving the Huskies a 6-3 lead.

Desert would grab one of the runs back in the bottom of the seventh, when an infield single by Hernandez chased the East Los Angeles starting pitcher and then Hernandez stole second. Soriano was walked and then both runners moved into scoring position on a wild pitch. After Follett fought back from an 0-2 hole to grab a walk to load the bases with two outs, another Huskies pitcher was chased away. Then Mejia punched a single to left, scoring Hernandez and getting Desert back to within striking distance, only down 6-4.

Unfortunately, East Los Angeles would tack on two more runs in the top of the ninth to put the game out of reach as went down in order in the bottom of the frame.

Sophomore right handed starting pitcher Quinton Bidon (Enumclaw, WA) pitched a solid five innings of work, surrendering two runs and six hits, striking out two in the no decision. Freshman right handed relief pitcher Darian Beck (Indio Shadow Hills) was tagged with the loss.

Photo by Britney Vargas (COD Sports Information)
Information, Photos & Story provided by COD Sports Information.