Baseball team falls to Long Beach City College in last game of regular season

Pitcher+Taylor+Rashi%2C+freshman%2C+throws+a+strike+during+the+top+of+the+first+inning+against+Long+Beach+City+College+on+April+29.+Photo+credit%3A+Sue+Hong

Pitcher Taylor Rashi, freshman, throws a strike during the top of the first inning against Long Beach City College on April 29. Photo credit: Sue Hong

The baseball game was tied at one in the eighth inning when Vikings 6-foot-7 250 pound freshman first baseman Vincent Byrd came up with two runners on and crushed a change up for a monster three-run home run to center field giving Long Beach City College a 4-1 lead.

The six-run eighth inning was the difference for Long Beach City College as the Vikings went on to beat El Camino College, 7-4, and clinched first place in the South Coast Conference on Friday.

“When you’re playing a good team and its a close game, it’s a razors edge,” coach Nate Fernley said. “And after the change-up that was up, that ended up being the difference.”

Warriors’ freshman starting pitcher Taylor Rashi was dealing, giving up one run on six hits and striking out nine through seven innings before giving up the home run.

“We were mixing up pitches pretty well, keeping the team off balance,”Rashi said. ” We knew they could hit; we just wanted to make sure to keep balls down and get guys out.”

For the most part pitching dominated the game, starting pitcher for the Vikings Tai Tiedemann held the Warriors to one run on six hits and struck out six batters in eight innings.

“We saw a lot of fastballs and curveballs and we have to do a better job of being on time and hitting the fastballs,” freshman catcher Connor Underwood said. “I think we’re definitely a better offensive team than we’ve showed today and past games.”

The Warriors only scored once going into the ninth but made things interesting scoring three times and bringing up the tying run to the plate in the last inning.

“I liked how we continued to fight and put up runs in the last inning and brought the tying run up to the plate,” Fernley said. “It wasn’t a game where we just gave in and I think we can take that from (today’s) game.”

Coming into the last game of the regular season, El Camino’s baseball team learned it had a spot in the playoffs and Fernley has confidence in his rotation going forward.

“Our starting pitching has been a strength,” Fernley said. “It’s going to be tough in a three game series to have any team that matches those three guys, we feel pretty good about that.”

Playoff match-ups and times wont be announced until Sunday afternoon, Fernley added.