GLENDALE — Taking a week-long break from competing in the Western State Conference South Division, the Glendale Community College baseball team found itself matched up against a familiar foe in L.A. Pierce on Wednesday.
Glendale and Pierce had been rivals when both teams were members of the South Division before Pierce recently moved to the conference’s North Division.
Unfortunately for Glendale, it encountered a rough first inning, as it yielded four runs en route to a 6-3 conference interdivisional contest defeat at Stengel Field.
“We just came out a little flat and tried to catch up right away,” said Glendale left fielder Dylan Trimarchi, who finished with a pair of hits and scored one run. “We tried some new things and it didn’t quite work out.
“That first inning just seemed to get away from us, but that’s baseball sometimes.”
Glendale, which has won three South Division championships in a row, had its four-game winning streak end and dropped to 19-13. Pierce improved to 18-15-1 and split two head-to-head matchups with Glendale. The Vaqueros posted an 8-7 road win Feb. 15.
Glendale turned to starting pitcher Carl Daniels, who had made three previous mound appearances before Wednesday. Daniels (1-1) struggled with his control and got one out. He gave up four runs (all earned) and four hits.
“I wanted to give him an opportunity to pitch,” Glendale Coach Chris Cicuto said. “He had some trouble and wasn’t very effective.
“Our bullpen came in and did a decent job to keep it close. The fundamentals got to us in the first inning.”
Joe Moran gave Pierce a 1-0 lead with a run-scoring ground-rule double. A fielder’s choice by Zach Friedman made it 2-0 before run-scoring singles by Casey Ryan and Joe Christian completed the scoring for Pierce.
Glendale scored twice in its half of the first to slice the deficit to 4-2. A run-scoring single by Cam Silva made it 4-1 and Carlos Robles then scored from third after Silva was caught in a rundown between first and second.
In the second, Pierce made it 5-2 on a throwing error by the pitcher on a pick-off attempt at first base that allowed Dylan Tashjian to score from third.
Pierce regained its four-run advantage in the ninth on a run-scoring triple by Moran. The Vaqueros wrapped up the scoring on an RBI groundout by Jonah Jarrad.
Pierce starting pitcher Harsa Adiyta (5-4) went eight innings, allowing two runs. He surrendered four hits and struck out four.
“[Adiyta] did a good job,” Cicuto said. “We did a good job of holding them down after the second inning and then we gave up the triple on an 0-2 pitch.
“We need to get back to creating some breaks and gaining momentum.”
David Garcia finished with a pair of hits for Glendale, which will next compete in a nonconference road game at 2:30 p.m. Thursday against Santa Ana.
Follow Charles Rich on Twitter: @TCNCharlesRich.