Each time American Legion District 20 opponents Glendale and Panorama City meet, it turns out to be an exercise in baseball eccentricity.
Three weeks ago, Panorama City used three Glendale errors to win, 6-3.
On Saturday at Monroe High, it was Panorama City's turn to prove that misses are at least as important as hits in determining the final score.
Despite belting 12 hits, four for extra bases, Panorama City also dished out four errors. The final miscue, a three-base error by center fielder Robert Kite, was more than enough to allow Glendale to win, 6-4, and tie the season series. Glendale improved to 10-5 and Eastern Division opponent Panorama City dropped to 11-5.
"They hit us, we win the game," Panorama City Coach Scott Smith said matter-of-factly. "We hit them, they win the game. Errors have been the difference."
Despite a solo home run by Panorama City's Russell Ortiz in the fifth inning and two triples by pitcher Sean Henson, Glendale entered the seventh with a 3-2 lead. Shane Cowsill opened with a walk and promptly stole second. After advancing to third on a ground out, Cowsill tried to score on Brent Overfelt's suicide squeeze. Panorama City first baseman Roland De La Maza pounced on the ball and fired home, getting Cowsill and ending the rally. Or so it seemed.
Overfelt stole second and scored on Dan Evans' base hit for the first run in the two-out rally. John Aquilar then followed with a line single to center that should not have scored Evans, let alone Aquilar. Both scored, however, when Kite swiped futilely at the ball, which rolled to the center-field fence.
Those runs turned out to be the difference in the game after Panorama City scored twice in the eighth.
Overfelt relieved starter and winner Daniel Gray in the eighth, retiring four of the last five Panorama City batters to earn the save.
Henson, who was relieved by Ortiz in the sixth, allowed only four hits and three runs, including one earned run.
"Our pitchers did a really good job--they are in no way responsible for today's loss," Smith said. "There are a lot of good teams in the Eastern Division. A couple of errors to anyone will mean a loss."