Comets win three straight

Baseball squad strings together perfect start to season


Christian Urrutia / The Advocate

Comet first baseman Chris Brue slides back to second base and is able to make it to third when Mission second baseman Adam Rios was unable to field the ball.

By Robert Clinton, Sports Editor

After ending last season on a nine-game losing streak, the baseball team is off to an impressive start by earning its third win in a 2-0 defensive battle against Mission College (1-1) on Saturday in Santa Clara.

Only four days into the 2016 baseball season the Comets (3-0) have already earned half as many wins as the team did in the entire 2015 campaign.

Starting Comet sophomore hurler Allen Ressler pitched a gem of a game by throwing 6 ⅔ hitless innings until giving up his first knock in the seventh inning.

Ressler also managed to steal two bases. 

“It was a classic pitchers’ duel. They pitched well and we only had one walk,” Comet coach Brian Guinn said. “The hard work is showing by the results on the field.”

The Comets take the field Thursday to face Sierra College at 2 p.m. in Rocklin.

Outscoring their opponents 11-4 in the first two games of the season, Mission posed a different challenge to the Comets as it had only given up one run this season.

CCC jumped out in front in the second inning when a pitch in the dirt got past the Mission catcher, allowing CCC base runner John Velasquez to score from third.

Following the Comets’ early run, the Saints held out until the middle innings. CCC was poised to score after Bryce Hutchings sprinted to third base after a fielding error by the Mission first baseman.

With Hutchings itching to reach home plate, a bunt by Justin Tonge was fielded by the Saint pitcher, who tossed the ball to his catcher forcing the out at home.

The bang-bang nature of the play, and the angle the umpire who made the call had, forced Guinn to make his way to the plate to discuss the particulars about the play with the umpire.

“From my angle it seemed like the catcher was blocking the plate. But the umpire has the final say,” Guinn said.

The Comet base runner, safe at first, eventually stole second but was stranded when CCC hit into an inning ending out at first, saving the Saints from being down more runs.

The second run for the Comets came in the eighth inning on a bloop hit over Mission’s second baseman. The shot was just high enough for Comet Sean Jackson to round third, beating the throw home to secure the run.

A two run advantage was all it took for Comet pitcher Joseph Banks to close the door on the possibility of a Saint resurgence. Banks’ effective pitching kept Marin off the board and relatively clear of Mission’s lineup finding any hitting rhythm.

“I feel good about our chances after today because they were the toughest opponent we’ve faced so far. So I’m confident,” Banks said.

The energy and atmosphere in the dugout is the polar opposite of last year’s team. Guys were on the rail talking it up until the final pop up was caught to end the game.

“We’ve been working since the fall on chemistry,” sophomore Comet pitcher David Gustafson said. “We have more experienced teammates that step up, doing the little things we didn’t do last year.”