Baseball team advances to next round in playoffs
Published: Friday, May 6, 2011
Updated: Friday, May 6, 2011 20:05
The baseball team beat Pierce College 7-3 on May 3, making it three Citrus victories in a row over the Brahmas. With the win, the Owls advance to the 2011 California Community College Athletic Association Southern California playoffs.
Citrus ended the regular season with a record of 18-18, Pierce 20-16.
The Owls are scheduled to play the first game in a best-of-three series on May 6 against no. 1 ranked Rio Hondo.
In the May 3 game, the Owls took an early lead in the bottom of the first inning when a single by shortstop Charles Ball brought in two runs, bringing the score to 3-0 Citrus.
However, both defenses held each other scoreless for four innings. In the bottom of the fifth, Citrus got a base hit from right fielder Hugo Atienzo. Ball followed that up with another base hit.
With Citrus players on first and second, second baseman Shane Fraijo made a sacrificial bunt to advance the runners to second and third.
After a long fly ball, Atienzo tagged up at home plate, bringing the score to 4-0 Citrus.
At the top of the sixth inning, the Brahmas seemed determined to get their scoring going. Thanks to a Citrus error, the bases were loaded, and LA Pierce avoided a shutout by scoring a run, making the score 4-1.
In the top of the ninth inning, the Owls answered back with three more runs. But the Brahmas rallied in the ninth with consecutive doubles bringing the score to 7-3. The Owls defense closed down the inning, and Citrus won the game.
Pierce head coach John Bushart had positive things to say about his team.
"We were kind of slumping toward the end of the game, but the guys fought hard," Bushart said. "We could have quit in the middle, but we kept fighting until the end."
Citrus College head coach Steve Gomez said his team will have to work hard to prepare for Rio Hondo on Friday.
"We will definitely be working on bunting. And we have to work on execution because we didn't do a good job," he said.
Citrus will be playing Rio Hondo for the first time since 2009. Rio Hondo comes into the match with a 22-consecutive game winning streak.
The best of three playoff series begins at 2 p.m. May 6 at Rio Hondo.
The second playoff game is scheduled for May 7 at Rio Hondo at 11 a.m.