Story by Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
Trace Eldridge hit a double off the wall in the bottom of the ninth inning to drive in the winning run as College of the Canyons walked off 4-3 over San Diego Mesa at Cougar Field on Saturday.
Canyons (5-2) led the bulk of the ballgame after the Cougars scored two runs in the first and another in the second for a 3-0 score that held up until the seventh inning.
COC manufactured an unearned run to get the action going in the first before Eddie Rodriguez brought home Eldridge with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
An RBI-double by Senituli Taufahema in the next inning brought around Blake Doremus and gave the Cougars a 3-0 advantage.
COC starting pitcher Jackson Cunningham (0-1, pictured above) was sharp from the early going, striking out five batters through the first three innings. He finished the game with six punch outs in seven innings of work. Cunningham left the game leading 3-2 after San Diego Mesa center fielder Tyler Lewkiw connected for a two-run home run to lead off the seventh.
Jarrett Poh worked the eighth inning, allowing a walk in the process, with Connor Dreyer called upon to throw the ninth.
The Olympians (3-4) managed to push across a run against Dreyer with a sacrifice fly that tied the game at 3-3, and set the stage for a Canyons walk-off win.
Ivan Lomeli led off the ninth and was promptly hit by a pitch. Taufahema was then able to move him over with a bunt to put a runner in scoring position. Corbin Williams then reached base after another HBP to bring up Eldridge, who promptly doubled to right field and brought home the pinch runner, Eddie Rosales, for a play at the plate and a 4-3 final score.
Eldridge finished the game 2-for-5 with a run and an RBI. Taufahema was 2-for-3 with an RBI and Williams went 2-for-3 with a run.
Braeden Bentley (0-1) took the loss for the Olympians. Dreyer (1-0) was credited with the win for Canyons.
Here’s the box score.
The Cougars will travel to face Allan Hancock at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, then return home to host Cerritos College on Wednesday.
COC and Cerritos will begin the day by completing their contest which originally at Cerritos began back on Jan. 30, but had to be suspended due to darkness with the game tied 5-5 in the bottom of the 10th inning. After that game goes final, the two teams will begin anew with first pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Stay up to date on all this season’s action by following the College of the Canyons Athletic department on social media at @COCathletics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.