City Baseball Semifinals : Granada Hills, Grant Score Wins, Meet for Title Thursday
Granada Hills High School, which committed eight errors in a 12-11 loss to Banning in last year’s City baseball semifinals, gained redemption Friday.
Its opponent, Poly, committed 11 errors, while Granada Hills scored in all but the first inning en route to a 14-7 semifinal victory at Cal State Northridge. This gave the Highlanders a berth in Thursday’s City 4-A championship game at Dodger Stadium.
Granada Hills (18-5) will face Grant as it seeks its sixth City championship in the last 12 years.
Granada Hills opened up an 8-1 lead before Ray Palafox of Poly hit a grand slam homer in the fifth to make it 8-5. Granada Hills scored once in the sixth, then added four runs in the seventh.
In the other semifinal, Rodney Beck relieved Grant starter Don Hussey in the third with the bases loaded, gave up a two-run single, then allowed only 3 hits over the next 4 innings in a 7-3 win over San Fernando at Birmingham High.
Beck, a senior righthander, struck out eight batters as Grant (19-5), which has never won a City baseball championship, advanced to the final for the first time since 1964.
In the 3-A division, top-seeded Venice hammered Palisades for four home runs in a 20-2 semifinal rout at Loyola Marymount. Junior Chico Garcia, who had 6 RBIs, led off an 8-run sixth inning with a solo home run, then later in the inning hit a two-out, 3-run shot to left-center.
Bob Tomaselli and Richard Simpson also homered for Venice (29-5), who will face Huntington Park in the final Thursday at Dodger Stadium.
At Cal State Los Angeles, Huntington Park had 16 hits and scored in every inning in a 15-1 victory over Franklin.
Senior right fielder Carlos Salvatierra went 4 for 4 with three singles and a double for Huntington Park, and scored four runs.