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All-Time Offensive Leaders Through
All-Time Pitching Leaders Through 2015
Comets to 4-Yr. Colleges
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2016 Season ...
Hornets win pitchers' duel 1-0; Rematch Sat.
Fullerton College's 6-foot-4, 240-pound
right-hander Randall Ortiz won a pitchers'
duel on Thursday as the Hornets, runners-up
in the 2014 state community college
tournament, edged Palomar, third-place
finisher in the state in 2015, 1-0 at Hornet
The two teams will face each other again in
a rematch on Saturday at 1 p.m. at the new
Palomar Baseball Complex.
Ortiz, who trimmed down 25 pounds from his
2015 playing weight for the Hornets during
the off-season, struck out 11 Comets, 10 of
them looking. Fullerton played spectacular
defense in back of Ortiz.
Troy Lamparello (left), Carter Johnson and
Marc Sauceda pitched for the Comets.
Lamparello threw the first five innings.
Johnson came on to begin the sixth and
Sauceda came in to begin the eighth. They
combined to strike out six.
Fullerton scored the game's only run in the
third inning on Austin O'Banion's two-out
RBI single through in the hole between the
shortstop and the second baseman.
Dylan Breault, Casey Henderson, Cole Brooks
and Chase Grant singled for Palomar's hits
in the game.
Palomar starter Taylor Turski
throws out Golden West's Chris Gilbody on a
first-inning sacrifice bunt in the Comets'
4-3 win Saturday
at Palomar College Ballpark. DIRECTLY ABOVE:
who followed Turski to the mound, delivers a
pitch. No. 20 is second baseman Mitch
Gallagher. -- Photos by Philip Farry.
BELOW: Chase Grant (left),
who tripled in the ninth inning and scored
the winning run on a single by Cody Norton
gives PC first win in new park
MARCOS (1-30-2015) --
Chase Grant tripled into the rightfield
corner with one
out in the
bottom of the ninth and Cody Norton drove
him in with a bloop single into short
rightfield on Saturday as Palomar beat
Golden West 4-3.
Leading up to
Norton's game-winning RBI, Casey Henderson
slugged a two-run home run to leftfield in
the third inning, the first HR ever at the
new Palomar College Ballpark, giving the
Comets a 3-1 lead. The Rustlers scored
single runs in the seventh and the top of
the ninth to tie it, the latter on a bad-hop
single that knocked down shortstop Dylan
Breault with with two outs.
Mitch Hayes, a
freshman right-hander from Great Oak High
School in Temecula, picked up Palomar's
first win of the season in relief. Taylor
Turski, who started and was the victim of an
unearned run, and Mike Lopez had limited
Golden West to two runs through 7 2/3
After the Rustlers
went in front 1-0 on an error to lead off
the game, the Comets tied the game 1-1 in
the second inning when when Mitch Gallagher
singled to center to drive in Breault, who
was hit by a pitch and advanced to second on
a passed ball.
Shane Olson doubled
and Matt Benson, Breault and Matt Wezniak
singled for the other Palomar hits.
Benson, the Comets'
catcher, had his third big game defensively,
picking off two baserunners and blocking
eight pitches in the dirt on eight attempts.
Golden West is the
defending champion of the Orange Empire
Conference, which is considered the best
community college conference in the nation.
The OEC has produced the last three state
champions, Cypress in 2013 and Orange Coast
in 2014 and 2015. Orange Empire teams have
won 14 state titles in the last 22 years.
Palomar will play
three more times vs. Orange Empire teams in
its next three games.
PC seeks split with
Orange Empire champs Sat.
BEACH (1-28-2016) --
Palomar, which inevitably seems to start the
season slowly, played better on Thursday
than it did 24 hours earlier. But the Comets
still lost 8-6 to defending Orange Empire
Conference champion Golden West.
will return to the new Palomar College
Ballpark to host the Rustlers in a return
matchup at 1 p.m. Saturday, when they will
host former Palomar players from all eras
for the second time this week.
If the five-time
defending PCAC champion Comets win
Saturday's rematch behind pre-season
community college All-American pitcher
Taylor Turski, they'll be 1-2 to open the
That would be the
same record, complete with a split vs.
Golden West, that the Comets had to begin
2015 when they wound up 37-8, placed third
in the CCCAA State Tournament and were
ranked No. 9 in the nation to conclude the
On Thursday, the
Comets were much improved from an opening
7-3 loss to College of the Desert in the
first game ever played at the new baseball
facility on Wednesday. But they were still
far from what coach Buck Taylor expects from
a squad that came into the season ranked No.
9 in the nation.
The big problem
again was defense. The Comets had six errors
and two passed balls over the first four
innings. They solved the defensive problems
over the final five innings and twice
rallied to tie the score at 3-3 and 6-6,
breaking out offensively with a 10-hit
attack that included a triple by Dylan
Breault and doubles by Eric Charles (above
left, file photo), Grant Buck and Casey
Henderson (above right).
6-foot-5 freshman first baseman from
Carlsbad High School, went 2-for-4 to lead
the offensive attack.
Charles, who made a
series of catches going back toward the
centerfield fence, originally signed with
Cal State Fullerton out of Redwood High
School in Visalia. He was rated the No. 1
player in the Titans' 2016 recruiting class.
Buck, Mike Benson
and Cody Norton all singled as the Comets
pushed across three runs in the top of the
fifth to come back from a 6-3 deficit to tie
the game the first time.
After Golden West
tallied three times in the bottom of the
inning, Palomar again scored three runs to
tie it up in the following inning on a
single by Chase Grant and, after a hard-hit
ball resulted to a bang-bang double play,
Breault's triple off a post in the leftfield
fence, Buck's RBI double, an RBI single by
Mitch Gallagher and an RBI triple off the
bat of Henderson.
drove Golden West opening-day starter Cody
Marshall, a transfer from Long Beach State,
from the mound with a non-decision. Palomar
got all 10 of its hits off the highly-touted
Marshall before Rick Winfield came on to
retire the Comets' last 11 batters.
starter Carter Johnson allowed only two
earned runs out of the seven runs Golden
West scored in the first five innings. He
took the loss. The Comets' third pitcher of
the afternoon, Mitch Hayes, retired the
Rustlers in the eighth inning, giving up a
one-out walk before second baseman Nashea
Diggs, Breault at short and first baseman
Buck turned a double play.
The other big
defensive play for Palomar besides Charles'
catches and the eighth-inning double play,
play included an earlier 6-4-3 double that
went from Breault-to-Diggs-to-Buck. Diggs had
the Comets' other hit of the day, a
The Rustlers won
the game game with one run each in the fifth
and eighth innings.
UCLA transfer Mike
Benson is safe at first in the fourth inning
in the first game at the new Palomar College
Ballpark on Wednesday. COD spoiled the
Comets' debut at the new facility 7-3 in a
sloppy game. -- Photo by Hugh Cox
PC comes up
short in sloppy debut on new field
The best thing about Palomar's first game
ever at its new baseball facility on
Wednesday is that the Comets won't have any
time to stress about what happened because
they get to play another game less than 24
Coach Buck Taylor's
team, ranked No. 2 in Southern California
and No. 10 in the nation in the pre-season,
will be right back in action Thursday at 2
p.m. at Golden West with an opportunity to
even its record at 2-2 after a forgetable,
error-filled, sloppy opening loss.
Playing before a
big crowd including a large contingent of
Palomar baseball alums in the first game
ever at Palomar Baseball Park, the Comets
were upset by visiting College of the Desert
7-3 in a game that was marred by 11 combined
errors by the two opponents.
early when the Roadrunners pushed across a
pair of unearned runs in the top of the
first inning as three three straight infield
errors and a single gave COD a 2-0 lead.
The Comets answered
back with a run in the bottom of the inning
when Dylan Breault singled, stole second,
took third on a throwing error by the
catcher and came home on Grant Buck's RBI
single to left.
But they never
really got untracked and COD scored four
runs in the third inning on a series of hits
and another error. And, by the time the dust
had cleared, Palomar had come up four runs
short despite six errors by the visitors.
The Comets scored
twice in the third inning on Niko Holm's
single, two COD errors and Shane Olson's RBI
Two College of the
Desert pitches shut out Palomar the rest of
the way. Starter Shane Lamparello, who had
only one bad inning, retired the side in
order in the fourth before leaving the game
and was tagged with the loss.
Tyler Baca, who
followed Lamparello to the mound, threw four
scoreless innings and Tom Brunansky came on
to pitch a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
Comets managed only five hits on the
afternoon, the singles by Breault, Buck and
Holm and an eighth-inning single by Casey
Rancho Buena Vista
High School product Mike Benson, a transfer
from UCLA where he red-shirted, threw out
two COD runners in the top of the eighth.
ceremonies are slated for 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, with the 2015 baseball opener vs.
College of the Desert at 2 p.m., at the new
Palomar College Ballpark at the far north
end of campus. Ex-Palomar players from
various eras will be recognized. Then, on
Saturday, all former Palomar players in
attendance will be hosted and recognized at
the Comets' 1 p.m. game vs. Golden West. The
Palomar Athletic Hall of Fame dinner is at 5
p.m. Saturday at Twin Oaks Golf Club. --
Photos by Hugh Cox
at new field in HOF week
Dedication ceremonies for Palomar College
Ballpark are slated for 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, followed by the Comets' first
game ever at the new facility at the north
end of campus vs. College of the Desert at 2
from various eras will be recognized. Then,
on Saturday, all former Palomar players in
attendance will be hosted and recognized at
the Comets' 1 p.m. game vs. Golden West.
The complex features
a new grass playing surface punctuated by
artificial turf adjoining the playing
surface, stadium seating, state-of-the-art
dugouts, press/announcers box, the same
audio system utilized at San Diego State's
Tony Gwynn Field, a Daktronics high
visibility LED scoreboard, an artificial
turf warm-up surface, five bullpen mounds,
seven batting cages, restrooms, snack bar,
ornate entrance, landscaping and other
The complex's opening
begins a migration of all of the college's
athletic facilities to the North end of
campus which will also include a softball
complex, new gymnasium complex, new strength
facility, swimming/water polo pool, tennis
courts and a multi-story kinesiology
building. The college previously moved its
artificial-turf soccer facility to the upper
end of campus. The new facilities will be
served by a parking structure.
Palomar players, San Diego Padres pitcher
Nick Vincent, pitcher Donnie Johnson and
middle infielder/outfielder Dick Christman
will be among 14 inductees into the Palomar
Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday at 5 p.m.
at Twin Oaks Golf Club. Another ex-Comet
baseball player, Padres pitching coach
Darren Balsley, is unable to attend due to
personal reasons. Balsley will now be
inducted as part of next year's class.
PC, Washington alum
Santy to Cal as assistant
BERKELEY (1-25-2016) --
B.K. Santy, who played four seasons as a starting
catcher, as a freshman and sophomore at Palomar and
as a junior and senior at the University of
Washington, has been hired as an assistant baseball
coach by the University of California-Berkeley.
After playing two seasons in the Pac-12 for the
Washington Huskies, Santy spent part of two seasons
in the Minnesota Twins farm system.
He was Palomar's
Palomar ranked No. 2 in state in the pre-season
SACRAMENTO (1-03-2016) --
will enter the 2016 baseball season ranked No. 2 in
Southern California by the California Community
College Baseball Coaches Association.
Orange Coast, which eliminated the Comets in
the 2015 State Final Four, then won its second
consecutive state championship, is ranked No. 1.
Palomar's 2015 team, which won its fifth straight
Pacific Coast Athletic Conference title, entered the
Final Four ranked second in the nation. The Comets
wound up third in the state tournament and ranked
No. 9 in the nation by Perfect Game USA.com
The Comets will play 14 games against nine teams
ranked in the top 20 in Southern Cal: two vs. the
top-ranked OCC Pirates, one vs. No. 3 Cypress, two
vs. No. 6 Golden West, two vs. No. 8 Fullerton, four
vs. No. 11 Southwestern, one vs. No. 12 Glendale,
one vs. No. 16 San Bernardino Valley and one vs. No.
SOCAL BASEBALL RANKINGS
1. Orange Coast (30-17 in 2015), 2. Palomar
(37-8), 3. Cypress (25-13), 4. Santa Barbara
City College (33-11); 5. Oxnard (26-11-1),
6. Golden West (26-16), 7. Saddleback
(27-16), 8. Fullerton (24-17), 9. Riverside
City College (22-17), 10. Rio Hondo (26-12),
11. Southwestern (29-10), 12. Glendale
(22-20), 13. Cuesta (22-18), 14. College of
the Canyons (19-17), 15. Hancock (13-23),
16. San Bernardino Valley (23-15), 17. Los
Angeles Mission (22-15), 18. Cerritos
(22-15), 19. El Camino (24-12), 20. Long
Beach City College (20-18)
Troy Lamparello (above, photo
by Hugh Cox) and Taylor Turski (below, photo by
Melinda Finn) are 2016 community college pre-season
All-Americans. Lamparello, a sophomore from El
Camino High School, and Turski, a sophomore from
Temecula Valley High School, were a combined 13-0 as
freshmen a year ago. The Comets will play their
season opener vs. College of the Desert at the new
Palomar College Ballpark on Wednesday, Jan. 27, at 2
honors for 2 Comets
Left-handed pitcher Taylor
Turski and right-hander Troy Lamparello have been
selected as pre-season CCCBA Community College
Turski, a sophomore from
Temecula Valley High School, compiled an 8-0
win-loss record and 1.03 earned run average for the
Comets in 2015 as a freshman.
Lamparello, a sophomore out
of El Camino High School, had a 5-0 win-loss record
and a 2.57 ERA.
Palomar, ranked No. 2 in
Southern California in the pre-season, will play its
season opener against College of the Desert in the
first-ever game played at the newly-completed
Palomar College Ballpark at the far north end of
campus on Wednesday, Jan. 27, at 2 p.m. Official
Opening Ceremonies for the new facility will be
conducted prior to the game.
After an away game at No.
6-ranked Golden West the following afternoon, the
Comets will play host to Palomar baseball players of
the past when they host the Rustlers on Saturday,
Jan. 30 at 1 p.m.
Vincent's final 2015 ERA at 2.35, career at
DIEGO (10-2-2015) --
product Nick Vincent lowered his final earned
run average for the San Diego Padres to 2.35
for the 2015 season and 2.63 for 150 2/3
innings pitched over four Major League
The former Comet
and Long Beach State star appeared in 18
games in September, allowing zero earned
runs for the month and one lone unearned
games in June, sandwiched between two trips
back to El Paso when the Padres optioned him
back to Triple A, Vincent made 22
consecutive Major League pitching
appearances without giving up an earned run
before finally surrndering an earned run the
final game of the regular season on Sunday
against the Dodgers in Los Angeles.
2015 Season ...
PC's Christy, McIver,
Afenir drafted, signed
SAN MARCOS (6-20-2015) --
Palomar products Francis Christy
(Arizona Diamondbacks, 7th round), Anthony McIver (Minnesota
Twins, 15th round) and Audie Afenir (New York Yankees, 25th
round) were selected in the First-Year Player Draft and
have signed and reported.
Christy was the Pacific Coast Athletic
Conference Player of the Year, State Community College Player of
the Year, American Baseball Coaches Association Pacific
Association Player of the Year and ABCA National Community
College Player of the Year as the catcher for Palomar’s 2015
McIver was drafted out of the
University of San Diego after transferring from Palomar. Afenir
was drafted out of Oral Roberts University after transferring
Palomar catcher Francis Christy in
the state Final Four -- Photo by Philip Farry.
Christy wins National Player of Year award
SAN MARCOS (6-04-2015) --
With next week's 2015
First-Year Player Draft only days away, the honors for Palomar
sophomore catcher Francis Christy continue unabated.
Christy, an early University of Washington signee who was
previously selected as Pacific Coast Athletic Conference Player
of the Year, has been named ABCA/Rawlings Gold Bat Award
National Co-Player of the Year by the American Baseball Coaches
He also was the catcher on the ABCA
Pacific Association first team and Pacific Association Player
of the Year. Palomar sophomore left-handed pitcher Jake Barnett,
like Christy a first-team All-California pick, made the Pacific
Association third team. Comet freshman outfielder Chase Grant
was selected to the Pacific Association Gold Glove team by the
Year Christy, Barnett 1st-team all-state
catcher Francis Christy, who tied for the state lead
with 11 home runs and was third in RBIs with 52, was
named California Community College Player of the
Year during the weekend’s Final Four.
was joined on the first team by sophomore
left hander and Palomar teammate Jake
(shown in photo by Philip Farry pitching in
the state winners' bracket finals against
eventual champion Orange Coast), has signed
with Lewis-Clark State of Lewiston, Idaho,
the premier team in the NAIA. (Lewis-Clark
State won its 17th NAIA World Series
championship in June).
had been recruited by Cal State Fullerton
and defending College World Series champion
Vanderbilt University, but would have had to
remain at Palomar an extra year to obtain
his A.A. degree.
were named second-team all-state and
first-team All-Southern California, freshman
left-handed pitcher Taylor Turski and
freshman shortstop Dylan Breault.
for third in state tournament
(5-24-2015, 5-25-2015) --
Palomar tournament host Fresno City College
7-3 behind Chase Grant’s four RBIs, stunning
a standing room-only crowd to begin the
CCCAA State Championship Final Four on
Saturday night at John Euless Ballpark.
Barnett lost a pitching duel to Art Vidrio
3-0 on Sunday afternoon and the Comets were
unable to completely recover as they lost
14-7 to San Joaquin under the lights Sunday
night and were eliminated. Orange Coast went
on to beat Delta 9-4 on Monday, going
undefeated in the double-elimination format
to claim its second straight state title.
had to “settle” for third in the state,
finishing its season 37-8. It was the first
time the Comets were shut out all season and
the first time they lost two straight games.
The Comets had entered the Final Four ranked
No. 2 in the nation while Delta was ranked
No. 1. Coast was unranked coming in.
Taylor’s Comets finished the year ranked
Cooper went 3-for-4 with two RBIs n the win
over Fresno, while Taylor Turski ran his
win-loss record to 8-0 by striking out five
batters over the first 6 2/3 innings. Graham
Gomez finished up with 2 1/3 shutout
the Comets a 3-0 lead with a bases-loaded
triple in the third inning, then scored on
Alec Salcedo’s squeeze bunt to make it 4-0.
Palomar continued on from there. (Grant is
pictured crossing the plate in a photo by
Orange Coast, Palomar wasted Barnett’s
pitching performance after blowing an
opportunity to get back in the game in the
sixth inning, when they loaded the bases
with two outs. The following batter, who
entered the game as a pinch-hitter, popped
up on the first pitch to strand all three
Player of the Year Francis Christy went
2-for-4 and Anthony Balderas was 2-for-3
against the Pirates. Vince Mori, Cooper and
Grant also hit safely.
jumped out 12-1 in the final game of the
tournament for Palomar, but the Comets
refused to give in and battled back to close
to within 12-7 with five runs in the fifth
inning and one more in the sixth. The latter
came on Christy’s 11th home run
of the year, which disappeared into the
night high over the rightfield wall to lead
off the inning.
Palomar could get no closer, leaving two
runners on base after Christy’s homer in the
seventh and again leading the bases loaded
in the eighth. The Mustangs added a pair of
late insurance runs.
left 14 runners on for the game and stranded
27 runners over three games.
game, Mori went 4-for-5 and Christy was
3-for-4 and walked twice, once
intentionally, to close out with five hits
in his last six at-bats in his final
appearance as a Comet. Cooper was 3-for-6,
finishing the tournament 7-for-12 over three
games. Salcedo was 3-for-5 in the game.
Chris Stratton added a pair of hits. Grant
singled to drive in a run.
pounded out 18 hits in the loss – but Delta
had 19 hits off four Comet pitchers.
It was the
Comets’ second appearance in the final Four.
They were runners-up in the state tournament
in 2005, when they needed one win the final
day to bring home the state championship but
lost back-to-back games to Santa Rosa, which
wrapped up the title.
BOX VS. FRESNO
| BOX VS. ORANGE COAST
| BOX VS. DELTA |
Player of Yr.; Taylor is Coach of Yr.
Francis Christy was selected as Palomar’s third
consecutive conference Player of the Year and Buck
Taylor was named Coach of the Year for the seventh
time in his 10 seasons as the Comets’ head coach at
the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference coaches’
selection meeting on Wednesday.
Five players from
Palomar’s No. 5 nationally-ranked and Southern
California Regionals top-seeded team receive
first-team recognition in balloting among conference
first-team selections are Christy, sophomore
left-handed pitcher Jake Barnett, freshman
left-handed pitcher Taylor Turski, sophomore
right-handed reliever Taylor Russell and freshman
shortstop Dylan Brauldt. Christy and Barnett are
repeat selections who also made the first team last
Kyle Montiel, who
moved on to pitch for Cal State San Marcos, and
Dylan Smith, now the starting rightfielder for San
Jose State, were PCAC Player of the Year selections
in 2013 and 2014, respectively.
honorable mention were freshman corner infielder
Niko Holm, sophomore outfielder Alec Salcedo,
sophomore third baseman Vince Mori, sophomore second
baseman Chris Stratton, sophomore utility player
Anthony Balderas, freshman right-handed pitcher Troy
Lamparello, sophomore right-handed reliever Rusty
Huber, sophomore left-handed reliever Graham Gomez
and freshman outfielder Joey Cooper.