Marcus Hatley, who singled to lead off the inning, is congratulated after scoring what turned out to be the winning run in top of the 12th at Southwestern on March 8. Palomar scored four more runs in the inning and won 11-6. -- Photo by Hugh Gerhardt
Palomar freshman Marcus Hatley
signs with Chicago Cubs as pitcher
Palomar baseball outfielder / pitcher Marcus Hatley (left), who was drafted in the 39th round by the Chicago Cubs last June, signed with the Cubs on Tuesday evening after an outstanding freshman season for the Comets.
The Cubs signed Hatley, a 6-foot-5, 195-pound right-hander who prepped at Mission Hills High School, as a pitcher.
Hatley, a first-team All-Pacific Coast Conference selection, started 40 games for the Comets in right field and center field during the 2007 season, hitting .290 with 17 doubles, three home runs and 31 RBIs. He hit .304 in conference.
Hatley also pitched two scoreless innings in relief, notching a save. Palomar coach Buck Taylor had planned to switch Hatley, who hit to a starting pitcher in 2008.
"Marcus' signing opens up a lot of innings for some other pitcher for us," Taylor said.
All-time hitting, pitching
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Nick Vincent, who has accepted a scholarship to Long Beach State, moved to second on Palomar's all-time lists in career pitching wins (20) and strikeouts (195) during the 2007 season. (Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Vincent, Imperiali, Willeford make
Palomar baseball all-time lists
Nick Vincent moved to second on Palomar's all-time list for career pitching wins (20) and career strikeouts (195) during the 2007 baseball season. Vincent also is third on the career ERA list (2.11) and sixth in career winning percentage (.769). Vincent's 77 strikeouts place him seventh all-time on the Comets' single-season list. His 82 strikeouts in 2006 remain third-best.
Ricky Imperiali set Palomar records for single-season sacrifice bunts (22), career sacrifice bunts (24) and single-season sacrifice bunts for conference games (14). Guy Willeford's 43 RBIs tie him for 11th on the all-time single-season list with former Major Leaguer Troy Afenir (1983) and Ron Kelley (1989). His 59 hits tie him for 18th on the single-season list.
Baseball Alumni Report
LEFT: Jeff Tezak slides into second base in Nebraska's 11-9 win at Kansas on Saturday. RIGHT: Dylan Parzyk (25) is mobbed by teammates after his home run gave Jayhawks a 1-0 lead over Huskers on Sunday. -- University of Kansas photos
Tezak helps eliminate Kansas;
Three ex-Comets star for Jayhawks
It was virtually a Palomar Alumni weekend Friday through Sunday in Lawrence, KS.
Nebraska won two of three games from Kansas at Hoagland Ballpark to keep the defending Big 12 Tournament champion Jayhawks out of this year' conference tourney.
Palomar transfer Jeff Tezak, the Husker's leading hitter (.345, 12 doubles, one triple, three home runs, 34 RBIs) and clean-up batter, went 3-for-3 with an RBI, two walks and two runs scored Saturday evening as Nebraska won 11-9 to eliminate the Jayhawks from post-season contention.
On Friday, right-hander and former Comet Andres Esquibel recorded the pitching win with 3 1/3 innings of one-hit, shutout relief -- notching his seventh victory of the season -- as the Jayhawks won the first game of the series 10-5.
On Sunday, Palomar alumnus Dylan Parzyk slugged a solo home run over the left-field wall in the fifth inning to give Kansas a 1-0 lead in a game Nebraska rallied to win 4-2. Palomar transfer Wally Marciel and Esquibel combined to throw a three-hitter for the Jayhawks in defeat. Marciel pitched 6 1/3 innings of three-hit ball, while Esquibel came on to throw 2 2/3 innings of no-hit relief.
Parzyk, the only senior of the four ex-Comets playing in the series, batted .283 for Kansas during the 2007 season. Esquibel (7-3, 4.66 ERA) and Marciel (5-3, 3.94 ERA) combined for 12 of the Jayhawks' 28 wins.
Nebraska (29-23, 14-13 for fourth place in the conference) moves on the the Big 12 Tournament beginning this week in Oklahoma City.
Tezek and the Huskers face Texas A&M on Wednesday, Kansas State on Thursday and Texas on Saturday in pool play.
Brandon Adams (left), Oklahoma State -- Came off an injury to go 2-0 with a 1.00 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings as the Cowboys, ranked 18th in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ Poll and 21st by both Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball, went 38-16 overall, 16-11 in conference to place third in the Big 12's final regular-season standings..
Oklahoma State moves on to play Baylor on Wednesday, Oklahoma on Friday and Missouri on Saturday in pool play as the Big 12 Tournament gets underway at Oklahoma City.
Gordon Stevens (right), Connecticut -- Went 2-for-2, doubled and drove in two runs to lead the Huskies to a 7-6 victory over Notre Dame before 2,839 fans at South Bend, IN, on Saturday, clinching a spot in the Big East Conference Tournament. One week earlier, Stevens went 2-for-4, homered, contributed a game-winning, two-run triple in the bottom of the eighth inning and drove in four runs as the Huskies rallied to beat Marist 10-8.
Ex-Palomar assistant coach Bruce Elliott is an assistant coach for UConn (30-25 overall).
Tyler Wightman (left), Sonoma State -- Went 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored as the Seahawks eliminated UC San Diego from NCAA Division II Regional play in Los Angeles by routing the Tritons 10-3. Batted .365 on the year with 11 doubles, a triple, four home runs and 49 RBIs as Sonoma set a school victory record by going 50-12. Wightman was named to the All-CCAA second team. Sonoma State, No.1 ranked in the nation in Div isionII in the regular season, was eliminated from the regionals by Cal State Los Angeles 4-1.
Travis Goset (right), Jamestown College (ND) -- Compiled a 1.27 ERA and struck out 18 batters in 21 1/3 innings in the Dakota Athletic Conference in helping lead the Jimmies to their seventh straight NAIA Region 3 appearance.
Struck out 7.59 batters per nine innings in the conference and 6.34 batters per nine innings on the season as Jamestown went 30-16. He formerly pitched at the University of Kansas, where he compiled a 2.57 ERA in limited action in 2005. (Photo by Staci Bates, Jamestown College Publications Office)
Erich Kemp, University of Utah -- Batting .303 as the Utes' starting first baseman.
Kevin Wilson, Cal State San Bernardino -- Made an impressive Division II debut this season, going 3-2 with a 3.96 ERA and striking out 89 batters in 82 1/3 innings. Probably will be a one-year player for the Coyotes as he is expected to be selectedin the June draft.
Cameron Penney (left), Centenary -- Hitting .296 with 30 RBIs in his first Division I season playing both first base and second base. (Centenary College of Louisiana photo)
Kenoli Fonseca, San Diego Christian -- Batted .389 with 22 RBIs as he made the All-Golden State Athletic Conference first team.
Tyler Perkins, Danny Flannery, Steve Tripp, Brendan McNamara, San Diego Christian -- Perkins batted .386 with 19 RBIs and Flannery hit.283. Tripp hit .419 in limited action. McNamara, a transfer from the University of Kansas where he pitched in 2006, saw his season cut short when he took a line drive in the face while sitting in the dugout.
Palomar Baseball Banquet
Imperiali is awarded MVP award;
Vincent, Willeford, Parks honored
Sophomore Ricky Imperiali (left), who hit .315 with 24 RBIs, was arguably Palomar's best defensive shortstop ever and led the state with 22 sacrifice hits, has been named the Comets' Most Valuable Player in baseball.
Imperiali also received the Outstanding Defensive Player award at the team's 2007 banquet at Alfresco's Italian Restaurant in Escondido.
CCCBCA Hall of Fame
Former Palomar coach Vetter
to be inducted into Hall on May 25
Bob Vetter (right), Palomar's head baseball coach from 1982-2005 who won 647 games on the college level, will be inducted into the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame on Friday evening, May 25, during the State Final Four Champions in Fresno.
Vetter guided the Comets to eight Pacific Coast Conference championship, 14 Southern California Regional appearances, eight Super Regionals and to second in the State Championships in 2005.
Vetter played on the college level at Cal Western (later USIU), where he was the Westerners' captain, starting center fielder and lead-off hitter and helped lead them to the NAIA World Series Championship his senior season in 1973,
He began his coaching career as an assistant at Cal Western the following season and, in 1975, was named USIU's head coach. At age 24, he was the youngest collegiate head coach in the country at the time. He coached USIU for five seasons, compiling a 101-82-1 record and, in 1979 was NAIA District III (which now is District II) Coach of the Year.
Vetter came to Palomar in 1981 as an assistant coach and was named head coach prior to the 1982 season. His first two Palomar teams featured catcher Troy Afenir, who went on to play in the Major Leagues for the Houston Astros, Oakland A's and Cincinnati Reds.
His 2005 championship team, in his final season, became the first San Diego County team to reach the State Championship Game in 34 years. After the season, he handed the Comets' reigns to his Associate Head Coach, Buck Taylor
As head coach at Palomar, Vetter sent 203 players on to the four-year college level. He also produced 45 players who signed professional contracts directly out of Palomar.
Vetter -- who lives in Del Mar with his wife Sarah, son Robby and daughter Emily -- is in his 15th year as chairperson of Palomar's Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation
Nick Vincent (left) and Ricky Imperiali both were first-team selections. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Five Comets are selected to 1st team
in balloting by conference coaches
Palomar College baseball players were selected to the
21-man All-Pacific Coast Conference first team Monday in
balloting by conference coaches.
Palomar 8, SD City 2
Vincent gets 20th career win and
is 2nd on all-time list; Deering 4-4
Sophomore right-hander Nick Vincent moved to No. 2 on the all-time Palomar career win list on Thursday as he pitched seven innings of four-hit, one-run baseball, striking out nine and walking one against San Diego City College.
The Comets got a 4-for-4 performance from Tim Deering to spark a 13-hit offensive attack as they buried the Knights 8-2 at Myers Field. They concluded the regular season 25-18, 16-9 to finish third in the Pacific Coast Conference.
Vincent (right), who has signed with Long Beach State -- ran his win-loss record to 20-6 for his Palomar career, which includes five wins in an injury red-shirt season in 2005. Mark Ringkamp, who later pitched for San Jose State and in the Texas Rangers organization, is the Palomar career leader with 23 wins in the 1888-1989 seasons.
Vincent -- who has signed with Long Beach State -- ran his win-loss record to 20-6 for his Palomar career, which includes five wins in an injury red-shirt season in 2005. Mark Ringkamp, who later pitched for San Jose State and in the Texas Rangers organization, is the Palomar career leader with 23 wins in the 1888-1989 seasons. He finished 23-6 as a Comet.
Vincent bumped Jon Fleming (who later pitched at Cal Poly) to third on the all-time Palomar career victory list. Fleming won 19 games from 2001-2003. Steve Kovensky (1984-85) and Nathan Meza (1999-2000) are tied for fourth with 18 victories each.
Kovensky later pitched in the College World Series for Florida State. Meza pitched in the Cleveland Indians organization.
The Comets did not receive a postseason playoff berth, so their season is over.
ABOVE RIGHT: Nick Vincent delivers pitch as he moves to second on all-time Palomar career win list. (Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Hatley, Fandel and Parks lead way in 9-3 win
James Hoyt, a 6-foot-6 freshman right-hander from Boise, ID, ran his pitching record to 2-0 on Tuesday, throwing six innings of six-hit, two-run ball in Palomar's 9-3 baseball win over San Diego City College.
Hoyt (left) got plenty of help from his offense as the Comets ran their record to 24-18, 15-9 in the Pacific Coast Conference at Morley Field in San Diego.
Palomar banged out 11 hits, led by freshman outfielder Marcus Hatley (right, 3-for-5, double, two runs scored), sophomore outfielder Joey Fandel (2-for-4, triple, two RBIs, two runs scored) and frewshman catcher Ryle Parks (2-for-2, double, sacrifice fly, two RBIs, two runs scored).
The Comets will send sophomore right-hander Nick Vincent to the mound when they close out the regular season against the Knights on Thursday at 2 p.m. at Myers Field.
Ex-Comet pitchers Esquibel, Goset get it done
Former Palomar pitchers Andrew Esquibel and Travis Goset remain hot on the NCAA Division I and NAIA levels, respectively.
Esquibel (left) came on in relief of another ex-Palomar pitcher, Wally Marciel, on Sunday and threw 3 2/3 innings of one-hit, shutout ball for the University of Kansas against No 27-ranked Oklahoma at Norman, OK. Esquibel notched the victory, advancing to 6-3 on the season, as the Jayawks won 9-4.
Kansas, the defending Big 12
Tournament champion, won the series from the Sooners two
games to one.
The 6-foot-3 left-hander
pitched two-hit shutout ball over eight innings this
past Tuesday, notching the win in Jamestown's 7-0
victory over Minot State in the Jimmies' long-delayed
home opener at Jamestown, ND.
Alumni news from a week ago ...
NCAA DIVISION I
Jeff Tezak, University of Nebraska -- Leads the Cornhuskers with a .358 batting average and also leads the club with a .528 slugging percentage. Has 13 doubles, a triple, three home runs and 29 RBIs, has walked 13 times and been hit by pitches 10 times. Tezak helped Nebraska to a 7-0 victory over No. 4-ranked Texas last Friday at Lincoln, NE, going 1-for-3 with a walk. The three-game weekend series against the Longhorns drew 21,698 fans.
Dylan Parzyk, University of Kansas -- Batting .282 for the Jayhawks while splitting time at catcher. Had a key RBI single in a 4-2 win over Texas Tech last weekend.
Cameron Penney, Centenary -- Batting .310 with six doubles, a triple and 24 RBIs.
Kyle Thompson, University of Sioux Falls -- Recorded two saves last weekend with shutout relief innings, in wins over MOunt Mary and Nebraska Wesleyan. Also homered in the 5-4 victory over Mount Mary.
GERMAN PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL
Chris Sweeney, Saarlouis Hornets -- Sweeney, who spent one season at Oral Roberts after leaving Palomar and helped Chico State to second in the 2005 NCAA Division II World Series, is on fire at the beginning of the Bundesliga professional league season, winning Player of the Week honors in the league both of the season's first two weeks. Leads the league with an .867 batting average after six games, going 13-for-15 to begin the season with five home runs and 18 RBIs as the Hornets are 6-0. Also has pitched two complete games, one a two-hitter.
Comets come up short, are 2 out with 2 left
Palomar fell two games behind Pacific Coast Conference baseball co-leaders San Diego Mesa and Southwestern with two games to play Saturday, losing to the Olympians 17-6 at Myers Field.
Tim Deering went 2-for-2 for the Comets (23-18, 14-9) with two runs scored and a sacrifice bunt. Ronnie Loeffler (left), Palomar's seventh pitcher of the afternoon, came in to get the Comets out of the sixth inning by coaxing a double-play ground ball. He wound allowing only one base runner as he threw 3 2/3 innings of one-hit, scoreless ball.
Vincent beats PCC leaders 6-0, Comets one out
Sophomore right hander Nick Vincent (left) and two relievers combined to blank first-place San Diego Mesa 6-0 on the road Thursday.
In the process, Palomar (23-17, 14-8) moved to within one game of the Pacific Coast Conference baseball lead with three games remaining in the regular season.
Vincent threw 6 2/3 innings of five-hit, shutout ball to notch the pitching win. Jeff Ibarra recorded a strikeout to end the Mesa seventh and Kegan Sharp struck out two batters in two scoreless innings to close out the trio's seven-hit shutout against the Olympians.
Freshman third baseman Mitch Blackburn (right) broke open a 2-0 game with a bases-loaded triple off the left-field fence to highlight the Comets' five-run sixth inning.
Palomar took a 1-0 lead off Mesa starter and loser Bryan Paukovits in the third inning when Blackburn walked, Ryle Parks doubled to left with one out and Eric Rodriguez drove Blackburn in with a sacrifice fly to center.
Parks' hit was his eighth in his last eight plate appearances. The streak ended when he grounded out in the fifth inning.
Blackburn finished 2-for-3 with the triple, three RBIs and two runs scored. Palomar's pitchers have a 23-inning scoreless streak.
The Comets will host Mesa on Saturday at noon as they try to run their win streak to five games.
Parks (4-4, 3 RBIs), Seaver ignite 19-hit attack
Freshman catcher Ryle Parks (left) continued his red-hot streak as Palomar clubbed Imperial Valley 16-0 in a Pacific Coast Conference baseball game at Myers Field on Monday.
Parks went 4-for-4 with a double and three RBIs, is 8-for-9 for his last two games and is batting .555 (10-for-18) since breaking into the starting lineup on April 12.
Kevin Seaver went 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs and Eric Rodriguez, Guy Willeford, Marcus Hatley, Tim Deering and Jimmy Pierce added two hits apiece in the Comets' 19-hit attack. James Borges drove in three runs.
Winner James McLaughlin (right) pitched two-hit ball over the first six innings, striking out four, to record his seventh victory in 10 decisions. He and relievers Drew Widmark, Jeff Ibarra, Nick Robertson and Ronnie Loeffler combined to throw a two-hitter for Palomar (22-17, 13-8 in conference).
Eric Rodriguez (9), who went 2-for-5 and drove in a run, gets congratulations from teammate Michael Cruz (14). No. 7 is Tim Deering. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Freshmen Parks, Blackburn go 6-for-8 in victory
Parks (left), making his fourth straight start at catcher, went 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI, two runs scored and a sacrifice bunt as the Comets rallied from an early 3-2 deficit to advance to 21-17 on the season, 12-8 in Pacific Coast Conference play.
Parks has batted .400 since breaking into the starting line-up on April 12, going 6-for-15 in that span and raising his average to .308 on the season .
Blackburn was 3-for-8, doubled, scored two runs and drove in a run.
Pitchers James Hoyt, winner Andrew Jenkins (right), Cameron Aspaas, Danny Masenburge and Nick Robertson combined to throw a six-hitter at the Arabs. Jenkins pitched three innings of no-hit, shutout ball.
Ricky Imperiali's state-leading 20th sacrifice bunt of the season drove in a run on a squeeze play in the six-run eighth inning.
Palomar, currently in third place in the PCC and one game out of second, will host IVC on Tuesday at 2 p.m,
The Comets then will play a home-and-home series with first-place San Diego Mesa on Thursday at Myers Field and Saturday at Mesa.
Nick Vincent struck out nine batters in six innings to pick up the pitching win against Grossmont on Thursday. (File photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Vincent and three relievers team to beat Griffins
Winning pitcher Nick Vincent struck out nine batters in six innings and Palomar bounced back into the baseball win column Thursday, beating Grossmont 4-2 at Myers Field.
Vincent and relievers Jeff Ibarra, Drew Widmark and Kegan Sharp combined to strike out 12. Sharp (left) came on with two out and two on in the top of the ninth and struck out Joel Lollis to end the game and notch the save.
Palomar scored a run in the bottom of the first on Seaver's RBI single, added a run in the fourth on Mitch Blackburn's RBI double, then broke a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the sixth on Fandel's bases-loaded single through the left side of the infield that drove in two runs.
Palomar bangs out 14 hits but loses on walk-off
Grossmont downed Palomar 12-11 in a Pacific Coast Conference slugfest on Tuesday in a back-and-forth slugfest on pinch-hitter Josh Miller's walk-off home run in the bottom of the 11th inning.
Ricky Imperiali (right, 3-for-4, double, 18th sacrifice bunt of the season, three RBIs and Guy Willeford (3-for-6, double, three RBIs) paced a 14-hit attack for the Comets (19-17, 10-8 in the Pacific Coast Conference).
Comets fall a game out of second in conference
Visiting Southwestern took over undisputed second place in the Pacific Coast Conference by one game and knocked Palomar into third with eight games to play on Thursday, scoring twice in the top of the ninth to break a 2-2 tie and hand the Comets a heart-breaking 4-2 loss.
Kevin Seaver (left) went 3-for-4 with two RBIs to pace a 10-hit attack for Palomar (19-16, 10-7). Seaver is 14-for-25 since coming off an early injury and is batting .423 for 40 at-bats with a .700 slugging percentage on the season.
Eric Rodriguez went 2-for-3 and made an alert throw from center field in the fifth inning to catch Southwestern's Kiko Hermosillo off second base.
Nick Vincent notched a strong pitching performance for the Comets and took a five-hitter into the ninth, when the Jaguars scored two runs.
Ricky Imperiali slides safely back into first base on second-inning pickoff attempt. Zane Chavez (below, watching ball clear the right-field fence) followed with a home run which scored Imperiali ahead of him. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Panthers come to town 24-9, lose 9-8 to Comets
Chaffey College's baseball team rolled into town with as 24-9 win-loss record Thursday, but left with its 10th loss as Palomar rallied to win 9-8 to conclude the Comet-Olympian Easter Series at Myers Field.
Comets can't hold early 3-0 lead, fall into tie for 2nd
Freshman left-hander Danny Massenburge turned in a short but impressive relief performance in the eighth inning and Eric Rodriguez (right) went 3-for-5 Tuesday, but Palomar couldn't hold a 3-0 lead on the road.
The Jaguars battled back to win the game 8-4.
The Comets (19-15, 10-6) fell two games out of first place in the Pacific Coast Conference with nine games left and are now tied with the Jaguars for second. Palomar hosts Southwestern in a rematch on Thursday at 2 p.m.
Rodriguez had a triple and an RBI for the Comets, who jumped out to a 3-0 lead they were unable to hold. Guy Willeford (2-for-4, RBI) and Kevin Seaver (2-for-5) had multiple-hit performances as Palomar wasted 11 hits.
Adam Pickens gets congratulated after three-run home run in first inning. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Hoyt, Willeford, Palomar roll Mt. San Jacinto 8-3
Redshirt freshman right-hander James Hoyt (left) threw two-hit ball over the first five innings, Marcus Hatley closed the game with four strikeouts in 1 2/3 innings and Guy Willeford went 4-for-4 with a home run, two RBIs and a walk Tuesday.
Their performances helped lift Palomar to an 8-3 victory over Mt. San Jacinto at Myers field in the Comet-Olympian Easter Series.
Adam Pickens hit a three-run home run in the first inning and Willeford slugged a solo homer in the third, staking Hoyt (1-0) to a 4-0 lead, and the Comets never looked back en route to their 18th victory compared with 14 losses.
The 6-foot-6 Hoyt struck out three on the way to his first victory. Hatley threw 1 2/3 innings of no-hit, shutout ball to notch his first save.
Palomar hosts Chaffey on Thursday at 2 p.m. as the Easter Series concludes.
Baseball Alumni Report
Adams pitches No. 14 Cowboys to Big 12 win
Ex-Palomar pitcher Brandon Adams (left) recorded the pitching win Sunday as No. 14-ranked Oklahoma State completed a three-game series sweep of Baylor, beating the Bears 10-5 at Stillwater, OK, to take over first place in the Big 12 race.
Adams threw four innings of two-hit ball in relief, striking out six. He lowered his ERA to 1.69 in three appearances for the Cowboys (22-6, 5-1 in the Big 12).
Other NCAA Division I ...
Jeff Tezak, Nebraska -- Tezak, who leads the 26th-ranked Huskers in hitting with a .403 average, continued his red-hot play over the weekend against No.13 Texas A&M at College Station, TX, going 6-for-12 in the series.
Tezak -- who has six doubles, a triple, two home runs and 22 RBIs and also leads Nebraska with a .610 slugging percentage -- went 2-for-3 and drove in four runs Friday in the Huskers' 11-4 victory. He had an RBI triple in the third inning and a three-run double in the top of the ninth.
He went 1-for-4 Saturday in a game Texas A&M won 8-5. On Sunday, Tezak was 3-for-5 in an 8-5 loss to the Aggies.
CLICK HERE to read feature on Tezak in the April 2 North County Times.
Erich Kemp, Utah -- Went 4-for-8 over the weekend as the Utes won one of three games in a series with UNLV at Salt Lake City, UT. Went 2-for-5 with an RBI on Friday in a 7-5 loss to 11 innings and was 2-for-3 with an RBI Saturday in a 5-4 loss. Reached base as a hit batter Sunday as Utah won 10-9.
Cameron Penney, Centenary -- Helped lead the Gents to a series sweep of Indiana University-Purdue University Ft. Wayne at Shreveport, LA. Went 2-for-3, triple, was hit by a pitch, walked and scored four runs in a 13-7 victory on Friday. Drove in three runs Saturday in a 13-1 win. Drove in a run with a sacrifice fly Sunday as Centenary completed the series sweep 9-5. Penney is batting .312 with 15 RBIs.
Kurt Wideman, UOP -- Went 2-for-5 with a double and an RBI but the Tigers dropped their Big West opener to Cal Poly 13-8 at Stockton.
Dylan Parzyk, Kansas -- Was 1-for-3 and had an RBI on Sunday in a 10-9 loss at No.25-ranked Missouri. Another Palomar transfer, Wally Marciel, pitched three innings opf two-hit, shutout ball in relief.
Keith Noe, Coastal Carolina -- Seeing limited duty in relief for the Chanticleers, who are ranked No.15 nationally and have won 15 games n a row. Coastal Carolina is 27-3 and 6-0 in the Big South Conference.
NCAA Division II ...
Tyler Wightman, Sonoma State -- Batting .367 with two home runs and 22 RBIs for the Seawolves, who are 29-5 and ranked No. 9 in the nation in Division II.
Kevin Wilson, Cal State San Bernardino -- Threw two innings of no-hit, shutout relief, striking out two, as the Coyotes routed Cal State San Marcos 11-4.
Vincent back in form in victory over City College
Nick Vincent (left) returned to normal form and Palomar rolled to its 10th Pacific Coast Conference baseball victory in 15 games Saturday, pounding San Diego City College 9-2 at Myers Field.
Vincent stopped the Knights on two runs over seven innings. From the fourth through seventh innings, the sophomore right-hander limited the Knights to one hit, faced the minimum 12 batters, struck out four and walked none.
Ricky Imperiali and Guy Willeford (right) broke open a 5-2 game with back-to-back two-run singles in the bottom of the fifth. Willeford (3-for-4, three RBIs), Mitch Blackburn (2-for-4, double, RBI) and Adam Pickens (2-for-4) had multiple hits. the Comets advanced to 17-13 overall.
Comets give up 7 unearned runs, defeated 10-6
Golden West scored seven unearned runs, six in the top of the eighth inning, to beat Palomar 10-6 on Tuesday in the Comet-Olympian Easter Series at Myers Field.
Palomar wins in 12th inning, regains tie for first
Jeff Ibarra (left) pitched 4 1/3 shutout innings in relief, Kegan Sharp pitched 1 2/3 shutout innings to finish the game and record the victory, and Palomar moved back into a tie for first place in Pacific Coast Conference baseball Tuesday, winning 4-3 in 12 innings at San Diego Mesa.
Comets' six-run rally falls one run short in ninth
Palomar scored six runs in the top of the ninth at San Diego's Morley Field on Thursday but came up a run short in a 10-9 Pacific Coast Conference loss to San Diego City College
Kevin Seaver, who third to left to drive in two runs and pull Palomar to within a run, was left stranded at third.
Baseball Alumni Report
Tezak gets 6 RBIs in sixth as Huskers top Mizzou
Palomar transfer Jeff Tezak drove in six runs in the sixth inning Sunday, leading 26th-ranked Nebraska to a 16-1 Big 12 victory over Missouri before a crowd of 5,003 at Lincoln, NE.
Tezak's grand-slam home run broke open a 4-1 game, and he followed later in the Huskers' 12-run inning by doubling to drive in two more runs.
Tezak (No. 19, shown being congratulated after his grand-slam) is batting .382 with seven doubles, two home runs and 18 RBIs. He leads the Huskers with a .600 slugging percentage. He was named Big 12 Player of the Week on March 12 after going 7-for-11 as Nebraska took two of three games from Alamaba at Tuscaloosa, AL.
Other NCAA Division I ...
Kurt Wideman, UOP -- Slugged a three-run home run over the left-field fence in the second inning at UCLA on Sunday to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead over the Bruins. UOP opened up an 8-1 lead before finally losing 15-8. Wideman also had a single in UOP's 4-3 victory over the Bruins.
Gordon Stevens, Connecticut -- Had a key single in UConn's 10-7 victory over St. John's on Sunday at Queens, NY, as the Huskies swept the Red Storm in a Big East series. Also had an RBI single to help lift UConn to a 4-3 win over the Red Storm. Helped key a 12-3 victory over New York Tech earlier in the week with an RBI single and sacrifice fly, the latter to break an early 1-1 tie.
Cameron Penney, Centenary -- Batting .311 playing first base, second base and third base, starting 25 of 26 games to date.
NCAA Division II ...
Kevin Wilson, Cal State San Bernardino -- Beat UC San Diego 4-3 on Sunday in La Jolla, scattering six hits over the first six innings. Leads the Coyotes with a 2-1 record and a 2.33 ERA.
Palomar's Tim Deering is safe at second base in the first inning as ball sails off Mesa shortstop. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Palomar falls right back out of tie
for 1st as 7-game win streak ends
After winning seven straight games to move into a tie for first place in Pacific Coast Conference baseball, Palomar came up flat Saturday, was outscored 13-4 by visiting San Diego Mesa, and fell back into second place.
Hatley also gave Palomar its only lead of the day, 4-3, in the bottom of the sixth inning when he advanced all the way from first to third on a bunt-and-run play on Manny Hernandez' sacrifice -- then scored when the play forced a bad throw.
Ricky Imperiali got down three successful sacrifice bunts for the Comets (15-11, 8-3).
Palomar can move back into a tie for first place with Mesa 13 games into the 25-game conference season by beating the Olympians on Tuesday, March 27, at Mesa at 2 p.m.
Comets win 7th in row, move into tie for first
Palomar turned back Imperial Valley 8-5 for its seventh straight baseball win on Thursday at Myers Field.
The victory moves the Comets into a tie for first place in the Pacific Coast Conference race with San Diego Mesa, a 4-1 loser to Southwestern -- and sets up an early showdown with the Olympians for the undisputed conference lead Saturday at noon, also at Myers Field.
Michael Cruz pitched shutout ball over the first five innings to notch the pitching win and advance to 3-1 on the season. Drew Widmark worked three shutout innings in relief, surrendering a lone unearned run. Jeff Ibarra notched the save.
McLaughlin, Rodriguez (5 RBIs) key 14-2 win
Palomar took over undisputed second place in the Pacific Coast Conference baseball race Tuesday afternoon, winning 14-2 at Imperial Valley while Southwestern, which was tied for second, fell to San Diego Mesa 1-0.
The Comets trail first-place Mesa by one game and will host IVC on Thursday at 2 p.m. and the Olympians on Saturday at noon.
San Diego State bound James McLaughlin (left) ran his win-loss record to 6-2, pitching four-hit ball and striking out four over the first five innings. Ronnie Loeffler, James Hoyt, Andrew Jenkins and Nick Robertson each threw an inning of scoreless relief as Palomar moved to 14-11 on the season, 7-3 in conference.
Zane Chavez (3-for-4, RBI), Eric Rodriguez (right, 2-for-3, home run, five RBIs) and Kevin Seaver (2-for-3, home run, double, two RBIs} led the way as the Comets banged out 16 hits off three IVC pitchers. Guy Willeford, Marcus Hatley and Ricky Imperiali had two hits each.
Comets top Grossmont with pitching, execution
Palomar's baseball team broke out new-look home uniforms for the first time since 1982 on Thursday, and the Comets were styling in more ways than one.
The Comets parlayed the eight-hit pitching of freshman right-handers Michael Cruz, (right, photo by Hugh Gerhardt), Kegan Sharp and Cameron Aspaas with lethal execution to run their win steak to five games, turning back Grossmont 3-1 at Myers Field.
Cruz (who notched the pitching win to advance to 2-1) threw 6 1/3 innings of one-run, five-hit ball and was followed to the mound by Sharp (1 2/3 scoreless innings) and Aspaas, who notched this third save by pitching a scoreless ninth inning.
With Palomar leading 2-1 with the bases loaded and one out in the top of the seventh, Sharp charged from the mound to field a suicide squeeze attempt by Grossmont's John Alia, and flipped the ball home to start a home-to-first double play. That got the Comets out of trouble and out of the inning.
Palomar broke a 0-0 tie in the bottom of the sixth on a throwing error on Zane Chavez' sacrifice bunt that allowed Guy Willeford, who was board on a walk, to score all the way from first. After Tim Deering's sacifice bunt moved Chavez from second to third, Marcus Hatley followed with a sacrifice fly to deep center.
The Comets got down four sacrifice bunts in the game. Besides Imperiali's squeeze, Chavez, Rodriguez and Deering also had sacrifice bunts.
Palomar advanced to 13-11 overall, 6-3 in the conference.
Baseball alumni report ...
Ex-Comet Tezak named Big 12 Player of Week
Nebraska third baseman and former Palomar All-American Jeff Tezak was selected as Big 12 Player of the Week after leading the Huskers to a series victory over No. 12 Alabama at Tuscaloosa, AL.
Tezak (left, Huskers.com photo) went 7-for-11 with a home run, double and 1.182 slugging percentage against the Crimson Tide.
On Saturday, Tezak went 5-for-5 with a game-tying homer in the seventh inning and a single for the game-winning RBI in the ninth as the Huskers 4-3 victory. The ex-Comet set a Sweell-Thomas Stadium record with the five hits.
Then, on Sunday, Tezak was 2-for-5 with a pair of doubles and an RBI as Nebraska won 6-5.
He had a pinch-hit single in the series opener on Friday.
Other NCAA Division I ...
Cameron Penney (Centenary) -- Had a single and stolen base Sunday as the Gents knocked off visiting Trinity 7-2 to sweep a three-game series. Penney went 2-for-4 with a double last Tuesday as Centenary fell to LSU 2-1 before a home crowd of 3,876.
Gordon Stevens (Connecticut) -- Banged out five hits in three games in Jacksonville, Fla., over the weekend as UConn's starting center fielder. Went 2-for-5 Saturday in a 9-7 victory over North Florida, then came back to go 2-for-4 Sunday in a 2-1 loss to Ohio State.
Brandon Adams (Oklahoma State) -- Returning from an injury, pitched two shutout innings in relief in his first appearance of the season as the Cowboys rocked Texas-Arlington 19-1 last Tuesday. Oklahoma State was rained out of a three-game series against Pepperdine over the weekend.
Kurt Wideman (UOP) -- Slugged a game-winning home run last weekend, lifting the Pacific Tigers to a 3-1 upset victory over Baylor at Stockton, CA. The Tigers were swept in a three-game series this weekend by Washington.
Andres Esquibel (Kansas) -- Pitched 2 1/3 relief innings, surrendering a single unearned run, in the Jayhawks' 8-7 loss at No. 10-ranked Arkansas on Friday night.
NCAA DIVISION II ...
Kevn Wilson (Cal State San Bernardino) -- Is second on the club with a 2.25 ERA over 12 innings after recovering from a pre-season fractured hand, helping the Coyotoes get off to a 15-8 start. He pitched a complete-game six-hitter on Saturday, giving up a single unearned run, but the Coyotes dropped a 2-1 decision to Cal Poly Pomona in the second game of a double-header.
Jose Hernandez (Cal State San Bernardino) -- Has struck out six batters in 7 1/3 innings as a reliever.
Travis Goset (Jamestown College) -- Turned in his second straight strong performance, holding Bethel (TN) to three hits in six innings on Tuesday in a pitching-duel loss to the Wildcats (who advanced to 13-3-1) in the Baseball Jamboree tournament at Sanford, FL. Goset has surrendered three hits in seven innings in one start and a relief appearance for the North Dakota team. The Jimmies, 17th-ranked nationally in the preseason, went 7-3 in Florida and are off to an 8-4 start.
Kenoli Fonseca (San Diego Christian) -- Leads the Hawks with a .446 batting average with a double, two triples, two homers and 13 RBIs. Fonsecua also leads the club with a .569 slugging percentage.
Tyler Perkins (San Diego Christian) -- Batting .419, putting him No. 2 on the club, with two doubles, a homer and 11 RBIs.
Kyle Thompson (University of Sioux Falls) -- Batting .333 with two home runs through the Cougars' first four games.
Esquibel (3-0, 1.16) beats Penn State
Palomar transfer Andres Esquibel continued to dominate for the University of Kansas baseball team Tuesday at Lawrence, KS, retiring the last 11 batters he faced in a four-inning performance to beat Penn State 17-5.
Esquibel gave up one hit, striking out five and walking one, as he advanced to 3-0 on the season with a 1.16 ERA.
Chavez, Hatley, Deering each gets 3 hits in win
Trailing 3-2 after seven innings, Palomar rallied for seven runs in the top of the eighth Tuesday and went on to beat Grossmont 9-5 for its fourth straight Pacific Coast Conference baseball win.
Zane Chavez (left) went 3-for-3 with a double and an RBI and has gone 9-for-14 during the four-game win streak. Chavez is Chavez is 11-for-his last 16 at-bats.
Marcus Hatley (right) went 3-for-5 with a double and RBI and Tim Deering was 3-for-5 with an RBI. Guy Willeford added two doubles and an RBI, while Ricky Imperiali had two singles and an RBI -- while making a series of spectacular plays at shortstop.
Palomar moved to within one game of the conference lead when San Diego City knocked off San Diego Mesa 9-7.
Palomar supports Vincent with 14 hits in victory
The Palomar baseball team completed a 3-win, 0-loss week in style at Myers Field on Saturday, supporting pitcher Nick Vincent to the tune of 14 hits and pounding Southwestern again 8-3 in a Pacific Coast Conference game.
Vincent (left, file photo) -- who is 2-1 with a 1.98 ERA over 50 innings -- halted the Jaguars on six hits over eight innings. He struck out out eight and left the game with an 8-1 lead.
The victory capped a week that saw the Comets, who had been slumping at the plate and had experienced particular difficulty hitting in back of returning second-team all-state selection Vincent, score 26 runs on 41 hits in three games.
The Comets (11-11 overall, 4-3 in conference) broke a 1-1 tie by scoring a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Hatley led off the inning by lining a single to left field and stealing second. Joey Fandel advanced Hatley to third with a ground ball to the right side, and Blackburn blooped a double to left to drive him in.
Palomar then blew the game open by scoring five more runs on seven hits in the bottom of the eighth. Fandel and Blackburn each doubled in a pair of runs, and Imperiali drove in a run with a single.
The win moves the Comets into a tie for second place with the Jaguars.
Marcus Hatley (26) is greeted by Palomar teammates after scoring 12th-inning run which turned out to be the game-winner. Comets scored five times in the inning, with Manny Hernandez' line single off the pitcher's leg scoring Hatley and Zane Chavez. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Comets oust Jags from first place
by scoring 5 times in top of the 12th
Joey Fandel stole home with the tying run in the eighth inning Thursday, and visiting Palomar knocked Southwestern out of first place in the Pacific Coast Conference in baseball by beating the Jaguars 11-6 in 12 innings.
The Comets banged out 17 hits off six Southwestern pitchers, in stark contrast to the teams' conference opener Feb. 24 on the same field, when the Jaguars won 1-0 in 11 innings.
Andrew Hayashi led the 17-hit attack by going 2-for-7 and driving in three runs. Manny Hernandez drove in two runs with a line drive off the pitcher's thigh to break a 5-5 tie with one out in the top of the 12th. And Cameron Aspaas (left) threw two-hit ball over the last three innings to pick up the pitching win.
But it was all made possible by a gutsy call by head coach / third base coach Buck Taylor with the bases loaded and one out in the top of the eighth. When the Southwestern reliever didn't look to third and started to wind up, Taylor sent Fandel, who beat the pitch home on the front end of a triple steal as Zane Chavez was safe at third and Mitch Blackburn was safe at second.
That tied the game at 5-5 and sent it to extra innings. The teams each scored a run in the 10th, and the Comets plated five more runs in the 12th, led by Hernandez' two-run single, to win it and even their conference record at 3-3. Marcus Hatley, Blackburn, Hayashi and Guy Willeford also singled in the inning. Hayashi and Willeford also drove in runs.
Ricky Imperiali, Willeford, Hatley, Fandel, Chavez and Blackburn joined Hayashi with multiple hits for Palomar, each with two hits.
Left-hander Jeff Ibarra pitched the Comets out of a seventh-inning jam, and Kegan Sharp set up Aspaas' game-winning three-inning performance by throwing shutout ball in the eighth and ninth.
Comets break out with 7-run seventh, top City
Palomar's baseball team supported the six-hit shutout pitching of James McLaughlin (left), Kegan Sharp and Cameron Aspaas by scoring all its runs in the seventh inning to top visiting San Diego City College 7-0 on Tuesday.
Zane Chavez had two of Palomar's seven hits in the inning, including a two-run double. Guy Willeford (right) drove in two runs by lining a single to right. Marcus Hatley, Ricky Imperiali and Mitch Blackburn also had RBIs.
For the game, Willeford and Chavez each went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs. Hatley was 2-for-4 with an RBI, and Andrew Hayashi went 2-for-3.
San Diego State-bound McLaughlin (4-2), the winning pitcher, dominated over the first seven innings, scattering five hits and striking out six. Sharp went 1-2-3 with a strikeout in the eighth inning and Aspaas finished up by retiring the Knights on one hit and a strikeout in the ninth.
Palomar continues Pacific Coast Conference play with a home and home series with Southwestern on Thursday on the road and Saturday back at Myers Field.
Palomar ends forgettable week but gets help
Palomar, which has high hopes of winning another Pacific Coast Conference baseball championship despite a less-than-impressive start, was involved in a "good news, bad news" scenario on Saturday.
The bad news: the Comets turned in a lackluster performance in a 6-3 loss to San Diego Mesa on the road, a loss that leaves them 1-3 in the conference after the first full week of the PCC season.
The good news: lowly Imperial Valley recorded a 2-1 upset win over Grossmont, expected to be one of the Comets' chief challengers once the 25-game conference season gets to crunch time in late April.
Palomar had few positives on which to hang their hats on an afternoon when starter and loser Nick Vincent pitched plenty well enough to win but was the victim of lack of hitting support, an inability to make often routine plays behind him, two errors and a passed ball.
Tim Deering led the Comets, going 2-for-4 and stealing two bases.
PHOTO: Shortstop Ricky Imperiali hurries to get a throw off to first. (Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Comets 12, Imperial Valley 2 ...
McGlaughlin, Imperiali and Hatley lift Comets
James McGlaughlin (left) threw seven innings of two-hit, shutout ball Thursday, and his Palomar teammates supported him with 14 hits in a 12-2 Pacific Coast Conference rout of host Imperial Valley.
Ricky Imperiali went 2-for-4 with two doubles and two RBIs, Tim Deering went 2-3 and Marcus Hatley slugged his third home run of the season, a grand-slam shot in the top of the ninth inning.
Hatley's HR scored Ryle Parks, Danny Pieczynski and James Borgess -- who all came off the bench and banged out consecutive singles -- ahead of him.
Palomar banged out seven extra-base hits behind McGalughlin (3-2 on the season), Eric Swweeney and Drew Widmark. Along with Hatley's HR and Imperiali's two doubles, Eric Rodriguez had a triple, and Joey Fandel and Jimmy Pierce contributed doubles.
Palomar pitchers have surrendered only three runs (two earned) in the club's last 22 innings.
The Comets, who are 8-9 overall and evened their conference record at 1-1, will host Grossmont, which is 2-0 in the conference and beat San Diego City College 14-6 on Thursday, in a rain make-up on Friday at 2 p.m.
PHOTO: Ricky Imperiali rounds third and heads for home in the fifth inning. Imperiali, who had doubled in drive in a run, scored on an IVC error. (Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Comets tumble 6-2 to Grossmont
The Palomar baseball team fell 6-2 to Grossmont in a Pacific Coast Conference rain make-up on Friday at Myers Field.
Marcus Hatley paced a six-hit attack for the Comets in defeat, going 2-for 4 with two doubles and an RBI.
FROM LEFT: University of Kansas pitcher Andres Esquibel, University of Utah third baseman Erich Kemp, Centenary first basebal Cameron Penney, University of Nebraska third baseman Jeff Tezak.
Tezak (.357) off fast for 7th-ranked Nebraska
Palomar alumnus Jeff Tezak is off to a fast start playing third base and designated hitter for the University of Nebraska, the No. 7-ranked team in Division I by Collegiate Baseball.
Tezak, batting .357 for the Cornhuskers, went 2-for-5 in a 9-5 loss to No. 6 Rice on Saturday in the Rice Invitational. He went 2-4 with an RBI in a 7-3 victory over Illinois State in the championship game of the UTA Invitational hosted by Texas-Arlington. Earlier in the same tournament, Tezak got down a safety squeeze for an RBI in a 6-2 win over New Mexico.
Other NCAA Division I ...
Andres Esquibel (Kansas) -- Leads the Jayhawks with a 2-0 win-loss record and a 1.93 ERA. Surrendered one run in 3 1/3 innings in a 7-6 loss at Oral Roberts on Tuesday night.
Dylan Parzyk (Kansas) -- Singled over the third-base bag in the ninth inning on Sunday at Stanford but was left stranded at third in a game the Cardinal won 7-6.
Cameron Penney (Centenary) -- Hitting .344 for the Gents playing third base and batting in the 3-hole. Went 3-for-5 in a 7-6 loss to Penn State earlier in the week. Over the weekend, was 4-5 in a 12-8 victory over Northern Iowa.
Kurt Wideman (UOP) -- Was 2-for-5 with a double in a 5-4 loss at No. 2 Clemson on Sunday.
Erich Kemp (Utah) -- Hitting .348 starting at third base for the Utes.
NCAA Division II ...
Derek Simper (San Francisco State) -- Hitting .304 starting at shortstop and batting in the 3-hole for the Gators. Went 2-for-4 and 2-3 with an RBI in the first two games of a series with Cal State Los Angeles over the weekend.
Travis Goset (Jamestown College, ND) -- Pitched a 1-2-3 relief inning with a strikeout and two fly balls as the Jimmies, ranked No. 17 nationally in the NAIA, opened their season against MacAllister College of St. Paul, MN, Tuesday night at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis. Jamestown flies out Friday for seven games in Florida.
Kenoli Fonseca (San Diego Christian) -- Went 5-for-6 with a home run as the Hawks swept a double-header from No. 8-ranked Cal Baptist 5-1 and 10-1 on Saturday. Was 3-4 in the opener and 2-2 in the nightcap for Christian (8-4).
Nick Vincent (above) threw nine innings of five-hit shutout ball in conference opener. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Comets fall 1-0 on unearned run in 11th inning
Palomar couldn't have gotten better pitching from starter Nick Vincent and reliever Kegan Sharp in its Pacific Coast Conference baseball opener at Southwestern on Saturday.
But it all went for naught as the Comets couldn't support either pitcher offensively and the Jaguars won the game 1-0 on an unearned run in the bottom of the 11th inning.
Nathaniel Dennis scored the game winner from second base on an errant throw to first base with two outs. An out would have completed an inning-ending double play, sending the game to the 12th.
Vincent, the Comets' returning second-team All-State selection who has signed with Long Beach State, lowered his earned run average to 1.56 for 34 2/3 innings by pitching nine innings of five-hit, shutout ball.
Sharp (right) came on in the 10th and was equally effective before surrendering his first run of the season on the infield error.
Donny Anderson threw 11 innings of seven-hit shutout ball for Southwestern but, like Vincent, was not around at the finish.
Palomar had runners at second and third with one out in both the fifth and 11th innings but was unable to advance them home.
Ricky Imperiali (2-for-3) and Marcus Hatley (2-for-5) had multiple-hit performances for the Comets (7-9 overall).
Joey Fandel slides around tag at second base during Saturday's 18-3 victory over Los Angeles Pierce. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Hatley, Willeford, Seaver homer in 18-3 victory
Marcus Hatley, Guy Willeford and Kevin Seaver all smacked home runs Saturday as Palomar concluded play in the Comet Invitational by routing Los Angeles Pierce 18-3 at Myers Field.
Willeford (right), the Comets' 6-foot-4, 215-pound freshman first baseman from Ramona High School, went 4-for-5 with the HR, four RBIs and three runs scored to pace a 19-hit attack.
Andrew Hayashi went 3-4 with a double and two RBIs, Adam Pickens was 3-5 and drove in a run, Hatley was 2-4 with the HR and three RBIs, Ricky Imperiali 2-3 with three RBIs and a sacrifice fly and Zane Chavez 2-3.
Imperiali had the Comets' best at-bat of the season in the fifth inning when he fouled off eight pitches before driving in two runs with a single up the middle.
The Comets broke open a 4-1 game with three runs in the fifth inning and nine more in the sixth.
Michael Cruz, the second of four Palomar pitchers, gave up one run in 4 1/3 innings to record the victory. Joe Cates and Walter Cale also had impressive performances.
The Comets (7-6) finished the tournament 2-0
Comets can't take advantage of opportunities
Palomar dropped a 2-0 heart-breaker to Santa Ana in a non-league game at Myers Field on Wednesday -- after loading the bases with none out in the second inning and one out in the ninth, and failing to score both times.
The Comets got four strong relief innings from freshman right-hander Keagan Sharp, who surrendered one hit, struck out two and started a sixth-inning double-play.
Three Palomar pitchers combined on a seven-hitter in the loss.
Adam Pickens, Tim Deering, Ricky Imperiali, Marcus Hatley and Zane Chavez hit safely for the Comets.
The Comets lost 11-1 at home to Orange Coast on Thursday. Mitch Blackburn broke up OCC pitcher Ryan Shapshire's no-hitter with two outs in the top of the ninth when he lined a 2-2 curveball into left field.
Palomar is 7-8 going into Saturday's Pacific Coast Conference opener at Southwestern. The Comets' previous seven losses were by a total of nine runs.
PHOTO: Shortstop Ricky Imperiali follows through after fielding ball, stepping on second and throwing to first on second-inning double-play. (Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
LEFT: Coach Buck Taylor watches the Comets down Cerro Coso. RIGHT: James McLaughlin deals to the plate on the way to a complete-game five-hitter. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
McLaughlin (5-hitter) wins in 1 hour, 55 minutes
Palomar sophomore right-hander James McLaughlin took only one hour, 55 minutes to pitch a complete-game, 5-1 baseball victory over Cerro Coso on Friday morning at Myers Field.
McLaughlin, who signed early with San Diego State, struck out seven and walked one as he became the second Palomar pitcher to throw a complete game this season. Nick Vincent beat Riverside Community College 6-1 with a complete game on Feb. 7.
McGlaughlin surrendered a solo home run to the Coyotes' Cameron White in the fourth inning, but retired the leadoff hitter in each of the other eight innings.
Guy Willeford (left, 2-for-2, double) and Kevin Seaver (2-for-3, double) had multiple-hit performances to lead Palomar (6-6) at the plate.
The Comets broke a 2-1 game open in the bottom of the seventh on Willeford's single, a fielder's choice, Seaver's single, Marcus Hatley's two-run double and Ricky Imperiali's suicide squeeze bunt.
The Comets play Los Angeles Pierce, a 6-0 winner over Cerro Coso in Friday's second game, on Saturday at 10 a.m.
Comets rally for 15-13 victory, then fall in 10th
Andrew Hayashi (left, 3-for-4, double, three RBIs) and Adam Pickens (3-5, three RBIs) paced a 15-hit attack as Palomar rallied from a 13-7 baseball deficit and beat host Citrus 15-13 on Saturday in the Mt. SAC Tournament.
Casey Edelbrock, the third of four Palomar pitchers, recorded the victory. Cameron Aspaas threw no-hit, shutout ball over the last to innings to notch his second save.
Guy Willeford and Marcus Hatley added two hits apiece for the Comets, who lost to Ventura 8-7 in 10 innings later in the day at Mt. SAC.
The Pirates scored a pair of unearned runs in the bottom of the 10th to beat the Comets (5-5 with their five losses by a total of six runs). Hatley went 3-6 for Palomar with three doubles and two RBIs. Zane Chavez was 3-for-7 with two RBIs. Ryle Parks and Ricky Imperiali added two hits each.
Palomar drops 7-6 decision after leading late
For the sixth time this season, the Comets saw a lead evaporate in the final three innings as the host Mounties rallied for three runs in the bottom of the ninth for a 7-6 victory at Mazmanian Field in the Mt.SAC Tournament.
Zane Chavez (right) went 2-for-3 for Palomar and was on base four times. He singled twice walked and was hit by a pitch. Tim Deering was 2-4 and had an RBI.
Palomar is 5-6 with the losses coming by a total of seven runs.
Starter Nick Vincent gave up two earned runs in SIX 2/3 innings but wasn't around at the end.
Comets lead RCC into late innings in 7-5 loss
Bidding for a second victory over No. 2 nationally-ranked Riverside Community College in three days, Palomar went on the road Friday and led the Tigers 4-3 through 6 1/2 innings.
But Riverside rallied to score three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning and continued on to a 7-5 non-conference victory, the Comets' only loss by more than a run this season.
Zane Chavez (2-for-4, RBI), Ricky Imperiali (2-4. RBI) and Eric Rodriguez (2-4) led Palomar hitters in the game. James McGlaughlin was effective into the seventh inning before tiring. Keagan Sharp pitched shutout ball over the last 1 2/3 innings.
Vincent halts No. 2-ranked team in country 6-1
Palomar right-hander Nick Vincent (right), who threw three complete-game victories last season on the way to a 9-2 record and second-team all-state recognition, made his first complete game of the 2007 baseball season an unforgettable one.
The sophomore from Ramona High School pitched a complete-game four-hitter, striking out seven and walking two, as the Comets stunned Riverside Community College, ranked No. 2 din the nation by Perfectgame Crosschecker Baseball.com, 6-1 at Myers Field.
"They have big hitters. That means they have bigger strike zones," said Vincent. "I attacked their weaknesses.
Vincent (1-0 on the season, 1.89 ERA in 19 innings) gave up a first-inning home run, then stopped the Tigers in their tracks the rest of the way. The Comets (4-3 took the lead on Ricky Imperiali's leadoff double and Eric Rodriguez' one-out, two-run homer over the leftfield fence in the third inning and stayed on top the rest of the way.
Manny Hernandez contributed a two-run double in the sixth inning, the Comets added another run on an error in the seventh and got their final run in the eighth inning on a single by Zane Chavez and Guy Willeford's RBI single.
Palomar got to RCC starter Anthony Carillo, who like Vincent signed early with Long Beach State, for four runs in five innings.
Riverside, top-ranked in the state by the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association, was coming off a 17-1 win at Mt. SAC on Tuesday night and is now 6-2 on the season. The Comets and Tigers play again Friday at 2 p.m. in Riverside.
(Photo by Hugh Gerhardt)
Hatley (3-5, HR, double, 5 RBIs), Comets win 18-10
Freshman center fielder Marcus Hatley went 3-for-5 with a home run, double and five RBIs and Zane Chavez (left) was 3-5 and drove in two runs Tuesday as Palomar out-slugged host Mt. San Jacinto 18-10 in a non-conference game.
Guy Willeford and Manny Hernandez had two hits each for the Comets while Drew Widmark, the third of five Palomar pitchers, picked up the win in relief.
The Comets (3-3) will host Riverside Community College, ranked No. 2 in the nation by one web site, today at 2 p.m. with 2006 second-team all-state pick Nick Vincent slated to pitch.
Palomar relievers Jeff Ibarra (left) and Ronnie Loeffler follow through in second game against Ventura Saturday. Right: Coach Buck Taylor. (Photos by Richard Trickle)
Cates gets win in first game as Comets split pair
Right-hander Joe Cates (left), who was making his first start since last March 17 when he sustained an arm injury that sidelined him the rest of the season, recorded the victory on Saturday with five solid innings as the Palomar baseball team won 7-2 in the first game of a double-header with visiting Ventura.
The Pirates came back to take the second game 3-2 as the winning run scored on an eighth-inning interference call. The two games concluded the Palomesa Tournament.
Cates, the San Diego Padres' 30th-round pick in the June 2006 draft, surrendered one run on four hits on a day that also featured strong performances by first-game relievers Casey Edlebrock and Drew Widmark, second-game starter Michael Cruz (one run on four hits and three strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings) and second-game relievers Jeff Ibarra, Ronnie Loeffler and James McLaughlin.
Shortstop Ricky Imperiali (above right) and catcher Ryle Parks set the tone for the first-game win early, Imperiali with a barehanded stab and throw to first to get Ventura lead-off hitter James Segovia in the first inning and Parks by gunning down Jose Vargas trying to steal second with a rocket throw in the second.
Imperiali also was part of a big defensive play in the ninth inning when he made a quick, strong relay of a throw from center fielder Marcus Hatley to gun down the Pirates' Junior Solis trying to score from second on a double. Catcher Danny Pieczynski completed the play by stopping Solis in his tracks with a strong tag in front of the plate.
Joey Fandel (3-for 5, two RBIs), Guy Willeford (3-5, double) and Andrew Hayashi (3-4, RBI) paced a 15-hit attack by the Comets in the game.
Imperiali (2-for-3) and Tim Deering (2-4) had multiple hits for Palomar in the second game.
"Our relievers are getting the job done. We're playing well. We just have to keep doing that, and we'll get over the one-run thing and good things will happen," coach Buck Taylor said.
Palomar is 2-3, with all three losses by one run, as it gets ready to begin a five-game week on Tuesday at Mt. San Jacinto. The Comets will host Riverside Community College, ranked No. 2 in the nation, on Wednesday with ace Nick Vincent slated to start on the mound.
Comets waste 12-K, 1-BB effort in 12-inning loss
Palomar wasted a 12-strikeout, one-walk performance by pitchers Nick Vincent (left), Keagan Sharp, Nick Robertson and Cameron Aspaas on Friday as the Comets dropped a 2-1 heartbreaker to Cerritos in 12 innings in the the Palomesa Tournament at Myers Field.
"I sure can't complain about the way we played" said coach Buck Taylor (right, shown in Jan. 27 game vs. Cypress). "We got great pitching, we didn't walk people, we played catch and we hit the ball hard early but nothing seemed to fall. If we play the way we've been playing, we're going to win a lot of games."
With a game coming up next Wednesday at Myers Field against Riverside Community College, the No.. 2-ranked team in the nation, the Comets used the game as a warm-up for Vincent, who struck out six and walked none before leaving the game after four innings with the game tied 1-1.
Palomar's pitchers have struck out 22 batters and walked three in the first three games and the Comets have made only one error to date in 29 1/3 innings.
Catcher Zane Chavez showed off his rifle right arm by gunning down all three Falcons who tried to steal.
Ricky Imperiali walked and scored Palomar's lone run on a third-inning error. Manny Hernandez had two hits for the Comets.
"It was like we were playing ourselves," Taylor said. "Cerritos pitches well, plays defense and executes."
The Falcons advanced to 4-1 on the season.
Palomar (1-2) will host Ventura in a 10 a.m. double-header on Saturday, Feb. 3, as the Palomesa Tournament concludes.
New facility approved; Comets celebrate with win
Less than 24 hours after finding out the college will construct a new playing facility to be finished some time in 2008, Palomar's baseball squad went out and celebrated with a 4-3 non-conference victory at Santa Ana College on Tuesday.
Coach Buck Taylor's squad, ranked No. 5 among Southern California community college teams in the pre-season, knocked off the No. 3-ranked Dons behind seven strong pitching innings from sophomore right-hander James McLaughlin and a 3-for-4 offensive performance by sophomore left fielder Joey Fandel,
McGlaughlin (left), who signed early with San Diego State for next season, scattered five hits over seven innings and left the game with a 3-1 lead. Andrew Jenkins pitched the eighth inning and Cameron Aspaas came on in the ninth to record the save.
Fandel doubled in the second inning, drove in a lrun with a ground ball in the fourth, hit a solo home run over the leftfield fence in the sixth and singled in the eighth. The HR was Fandel's second in two games for the 2007 season and he finished the game with a pair of RBIs.
Sophomore second baseman Tim Deering also had his second consecutive multiple-hit game, going 3-for-5. Fandel and Deering are a combined 12-for-19 in the Comets' first two games.
The new baseball complex, which has been in the planning stages for a period of years, will be located at the northeast end of campus near Borden Road,, at the site of the old driving range.
Palomar's Joey Fandel, left, and Ricky Imperiali on Saturday at Cypress. Fandel homered, singled twice, stole a base and drove in three runs. (Photos by Hugh Gerhardt)
Comets outplay Cypress most of day, fall in 9th
Palomar, ranked No. 5 in Southern California, jumped out to an 8-2 lead over Cypress in its season baseball opener on the road Saturday. But the No. 4 Chargers battled back to win 8-2.
Nick Vincent, the Comets' starter, struck out six batters in six innings before leaving the game a 5-2 lead.
Palomar stretched its advantage to 8-2 before Cypress came back to score once in the seventh, four times in the eighth and two in the bottom of the ninth to win the game on a walk-off home run by Brandon Laird.
Laird, younger brother of former Chargers All-American and current Texas Rangers catcher Gerald Laird, went 0-for-2 against Vincent, striking out in the first and fourth innings.
The Comets banged out 14 hits, led by sophomore left fielder Joey Fandel (above right, shown stealing second in seventh inning, 3-for-5, home run, three RBIs) and sophomore second baseman Tim Deering (left, 3-5, double). Guy Willeford (2-4, double, two RBIs) and Ben Caple (2-4) also had multiple-hit performances.
Palomar also benefited from big defensive plays by third baseman Mitch Blackburn and shortstop Ricky Imperiali.
"I thought we played very well. You're going to lose some tough ones like that, -- it's part of the game -- but I can't fault the way we played," Palomar coach Buck Taylor said.
The Comets visit Santa Ana on Tuesday at 2 p.m. to begin a four-game week.
Palomar will open its 2007 campaign at Cypress
Palomar is ranked No. 5 in Southern California in the pre-season by the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association going into Saturday's 2007 season opener at Cypress.
The Comets, who are seeking their seventh Pacific Coast Conference championship in the last 10 seasons, will play four games in the season's first 14 days against No. 1 Riverside Community College, No. 3 Santa Ana and No. 4 Cypress.
Led by returning All-Southern California pitcher Nick Vincent (right), Palomar will open its second season under coach Buck Taylor in Saturday's 1 p.m. game against the Chargers, the third-place finisher in the 2006 state community college tournament.
Vincent, who was 9-2 with a 1.51 ERA last season, suffering his two losses by 2-1 scores, is the listed starter for Palomar. He's 14-3 with a 1.50 ERA in two seasons for the Comets, getting an injury red-shirt for the 2005 season, when he started the year 5-1 before being sidelined with an injury.
Vincent signed early with Long Beach State. Both he and catcher Zane Chavez, the 2006 state RBI champion who signed early with Indiana State, have been selected as pre-season community college All-Americans by Collegiate Baseball.
The Comets will visit Santa Ana in their second game on Tuesday, Jan. 30, at 2 p.m.
After hosting the Palomar Tournament, the Comets will play a home-and-home series with Riverside, at Palomar on Feb. 7 and at Riverside on Feb. 9. The Tigers also are ranked No. 2 in the nation by Perfectgame Crosschecker Baseball behind Walters State (TN). (The Comets are ranked No. 34).
The Comets also will host No. 7 Orange Coast on Feb. 13, will host Santa Ana on Feb. 20 and will host No. 2 Chaffey on April 5.
Taylor became the first baseball coach in PCC history to win the conference in his first season in 2006. He previously was the Comets' associate head coach under the legendary Bob Vetter, and was elevated to the head coach's position following the 2005 season, when the Comets placed second in the California Community College state tournament.
Nine Palomar players sign or verbal to D-I programs
Nine Palomar College baseball players
signed or committed to NCAA Division I
colleges for the 2008 season by the end of
day of the early signing period on Thursday.
Chavez was selected by the Kansas City
Royals in the 19th round of the June 2005 draft, Marciel by the
Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 36th around this past June.
Balsley retained by Padres as pitching coach
Former Palomar pitcher Darren Balsley (left) has received a two-year contract extension as the San Diego Padres' pitching coach.
Balsley's 2006 Padres pitching staff led the National League in ERA (3.87), fewest hits (1,385) and quality starts (90).
The Padres also were third in the National League in shutouts (11).
KKSM RADIO LIVE BROADCASTS SELECTED GAMES
Cox Cable Channel 958
Copyright ©2007 Palomar Community College. All rights reserved.
Questions about this web site? contact Tom Saxe