Knights win in ninth inning thriller against West Los Angeles


David Pradel

Sophomore Ray Jones comes up clutch for the Knights as he hits the game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the ninth against West L.A. for the 4-3 victory on Feb. 3 at Morley Field. Photo credit: David Pradel

David Pradel

With the game tied at 3-3 and with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Knights sophomore outfielder Ray Jones came through for San Diego City College as he hit the game-winning RBI single against West L.A. for a 4-3 home victory on Feb. 3.

“I had a feeling that (the pitch) was going to come inside – so I just waited for it and yanked it,” Jones said.

Jones was able to crank the ball through the right side of the field and with his clutch hit, freshman Emil Sahlin who was itching his way to home plate from third base scored.

For Jones, this wasn’t the first time he came up clutch for his team and expressed that he was nervous when he was up at bat.

“I did it once in High School but it was still new to me – It’s always nerve-wracking and different,” Jones said.

The Knights jumped to a 2-0 lead in the second inning but after letting one run in during the sixth inning and two more runs in the top of the ninth, the Knights baseball team were coming into the bottom of the ninth down 3-2.

Following the first out from freshman infielder Kyle Golden, sophomore catcher Cory Russell was able to get on base after hitting one down the middle of the field.

With Russell on base, freshman left fielder Scott Martinez was able to hit the game-tying RBI triple that brought Russell home for the score and with his base-running speed, Martinez landed on third base.

“I couldn’t ask for anything more. (Martinez) did a stellar job and we needed it and he came through and did the job,” Jones added.

After a second out from freshman shortstop Kiki Leyva and a pitching change for the Wildcats and switching Sahlin to pinch run for Martinez – Jones was able to get the Knights their second win of the season and improve the team’s record to 2-2.

“Right now, we are going to take every W that we can get,” said Head Coach Chris Brown. “We definitely didn’t play our best game but we are getting better and better each game we play but we are happy with the win – we had a phenomenon pitching performance out of C.J. Broussard. He kept us in it and it was his game all the way to ninth inning.”

Broussard had eight strikeouts, two walks and allowed three runs on seven hits but in the top of the ninth after a rally by the Wildcats to take the lead, the Knights brought freshman pitcher James Klueber in for Broussard.

“I give (West. L.A.) credit too by battling back and finding ways to score late in the game. Our defense tighten up, Kiki Leyva came up with a great play at the top of the ninth inning because if that ball got through then it could’ve put more pressure on us,” Brown said.

Brown went on to say that the Knights defense and pitching did an excellent job during the game but pointed out that the team needs to improve on the offensive side and the base-running side.

Jones also expressed even with the win against West L.A. the team can still improve on hitting.

“We are definitely going to get better at hitting – this won’t be our last victory, there will be many more to come and if we play defense and pitch like we did today I think we are going to do great as the season moves forward,” added Jones.