Crescenta Valley High’s baseball team didn’t come alive until the seventh inning of Friday’s Southern Section Division I playoff game against Channel Islands.
It made for a spectacular, 3-2 come-from-behind victory for the Falcons.
Crescenta Valley (17-5) went into the bottom of the seventh trailing, 2-0. The Falcons scored two runs to send the game into extra innings and in the eighth senior shortstop Kirk Hagge drove in the winning run with a single.
With one out, Hagge smacked a fastball into right field and Jesse Mitchell scored from second base. Mitchell walked and reached second on a groundout.
The Falcons scored their seventh-inning runs with two out. John French drove in the first one with an infield single and Jason Swims tied the score with an RBI single to center field.
“A couple of things went wrong for us early on and it would have been easy for us to just give up,” Crescenta Valley Coach Tony Zarrillo said. “But we hung in there and we battled and we did great.”
Channel Islands (17-11) scored all its runs in the first inning. Rene Sanchez, who singled to center, made it home on a fielder’s choice. He advanced to second when Ysidro Alfaro walked and got to third on Javier Rios’ bunt.
Tony De La Torre scored Channel Islands’ second run on an error when Hagge couldn’t hold on to Johnny Olivares’ softly hit ball.
“We played great defense and we had great pitching but we couldn’t get the runs we needed,” Channel Islands Coach Al Tarazon said. “We came as close as we could, with two outs in the seventh and our best guy up on the mound with a little bit of gas left.”
Sanchez (6-1) gave up only four hits in seven innings for Channel Islands. Senior Nacho Godinez (3-2), who started the eighth, took the loss.
Senior Garrett Lee (5-3) went the distance for the Falcons, giving up seven hits, walking three and striking out two. Falcon ace Jim Parque didn’t start because he wasn’t feeling good. He had flu-like symptoms, according to Zarrillo.