Warriors Opening Day Comeback Comes Up Short at Canyons

Photo by Bill Hood
Photo by Bill Hood

No. 2 El Camino College erupted in the ninth inning to force extra innings but would eventually fall at College of the Canyons, 5-4, in 10 innings on Friday afternoon.

The Warriors (0-1) offense was held in check throughout the game as Cougars (1-0) starter Jacob Lopez held ECC scoreless for eight innings. But trailing 4-0 in the ninth, the Warriors bats woke up as sophomore Ty Conrad started the rally with a one-out single to left. Cody Wissler followed with a single of his own to put runners on first and second, bringing an end to Lopez's day on the bump.

Reliever Connor Dreyer entered to try and close things out for the Cougars but he was welcomed into the game with an RBI double to left, scoring Conrad and trimming the deficit to 4-1.

Diego Alarcon kept the hit parade going with a single into center to plate Wissler and put the runners on the corners with one out.

Matthew Beserra made it 4-3 with an RBI single and then Joseph Borges capped the rally with a sacrifice fly to right field to bring in Alarcon and tie things up.

The Warriors had a chance to keep the ball rolling as Beserra stole second and then Spencer Palmer's walk loaded the bases for catcher Jose Ruiz Jr. But the Warriors backstop fouled out to right to end the threat.

Nathan Draves came in to pitch a spotless bottom of the ninth for ECC but Jarrett Poh followed suit for the Cougars with a 1-2-3 10th inning.

The Cougars came up in their half of the 10th and put an end to Draves' perfect day on the mound quickly as Senituli Taufahema led off the frame with a double down the right field line and then Eddie Rodriguez singled to right to score Taufahema and give the Cougars the victory.

Rodriguez and Taufahema each tallied two hits for Canyons while Beserra and Folgers each went 2-for-4 for the Warriors.

Kenneth Haus drew a no-decision after going seven innings and striking out seven. He gave up four runs, three earned, on five hits and three walks.

Lopez finished with nine strikeouts on the mound for the Cougars, allowing two earned runs on five hits.

The two teams will face off again on Saturday at noon as the venue switches to Warrior Field.