By Robert Nilsen
CYPRESS, CA – The Cypress College baseball team (14-4) charged back from a 7-2 deficit to defeat the Riverside Tigers (13-6) by the score of 8-7 at home on Thursday afternoon to take game two of their three game series. The Chargers entered the game ranked No. 4 in Southern California, while the Tigers entered the game ranked No. 8 in Southern California.
Henry Martinez (2-1) got the start for the Chargers and worked 3 innings while allowing 7 runs on 10 hits and striking out 5. Evan Flohr (0-1) relieved Martinez and shut down the Tigers as he allowed only 4 hits over 5 innings while striking out 9. Michael Lozano (2-0) struck out 3 Tigers in the ninth inning as he proceeded to grab his second win of the season. Cory Wildhagen (2-for-5, 4 RBI) and Chase Sebby (3-for-4, 2 RBI) led the Chargers offense.
Matt Acosta (3-1) started the game for the Tigers and pitched 4.1 innings while allowing 4 runs on 6 hits. Darin May (2-1) received the loss for the Tigers after allowing the Chargers to score the winning run in the ninth.
The Tigers jumped out to an early 3-0 lead courtesy of a 3-run home run to left field by Ryan Motta in the first inning with just 1 out. Riverside added to their lead in the top of the third inning on a 2-run single by Jake Barham to take a 5-0 lead. The Chargers got 2 runs back in the bottom half of the inning on a double by Wildhagen to narrow the deficit to 5-2. The Tigers quickly responded with two runs of their own in the top of the fourth inning to extend their lead back to 5 runs.
Trailing 7-2 the Chargers slowly began to chip away at the Tigers lead. Paul Gomez (2-for-3, RBI) began a rally in the bottom of the fifth inning with a walk. Angel Ortiz (1-for-3) followed with an infield single to give the Chargers two runners on and nobody out. Sebby then came to the plate and smashed a triple to deep right center field to narrow Riverside's lead to 7-4. After setting Riverside down 1-2-3 in the top of the sixth inning the Chargers proceeded to score 2 more runs in the bottom of the inning on a base hit by Wildhagen to cut the Tigers lead to 7-6. The Chargers offense kept on rolling as Gomez led off the bottom of the eighth inning by smashing a game tying home run to center field to even the score at 7 apiece. Willie Aguilar (2-for-4) started the game winning rally for the Chargers as he led off the bottom of the ninth inning with a base hit. Aguilar then advanced to second on an errant pickoff attempt by May and then made it to third on a groundout. Pierson Loska (1-for-4, RBI) then stepped to the plate with 1 out and lined a walk off base hit to right field to give the Chargers an 8-7 victory.
Cypress baseball will return to action at Riverside College on Saturday, March 11 at 2:00 PM to finish their three game series.
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