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City Times

The news site of San Diego City College

City Times

The news site of San Diego City College

City Times

City College baseball wins thriller over Mesa College, keeping playoff hopes alive

Knights win, 9-8 behind ‘workhorse’ pitcher Avery Laine
San Diego City College’s baseball team celebrates their 9-8 walk off victory over Mesa College by dousing Coach Chris Brown with Gatorade at Morley Field Friday, April 19, 2024. Photo by Danny Straus/City Times Media

The San Diego City College baseball team defeated San Diego Mesa College, 9-8, in a back-and-forth battle that ended in a walk-off win for the Knights at Morley Field April 19.

With the win, City jumped to second place in the PCA Conference standings (20-15, 12-10 PCA) and boosted their playoff chances, while Mesa dropped to 20-17, 10-12 PCA 

The match up featured a first pitch by City President Ricky Shabazz, giveaways of replica baseball jerseys and food catered by Phil’s BBQ. 

With the score tied, 8-8, in the bottom of the ninth, City freshman Landyn Magina belted a pitch off Mesa pitcher Cameron Goffar that ricocheted off the arm of the Olympians’ third baseman, winning the game for the Knights.

It proved to be a fitting end for Knights starting pitcher Avery Laine, who threw eight innings and 130 pitches while providing relief for his bullpen, something Coach Brown said he appreciated.

“Whenever you put Avery on the mound at this level, you pretty much expect to get seven to nine innings because he is a workhorse,” Brown said. “You know he was at 130 pitches and he was still dealing and he did what he needed to do to keep us in the game.”

Laine and reliever Erik Radder were the only pitchers for the Knights, a large contrast to the six pitchers that Mesa College featured.

Mesa was led offensively by Andrew Ramirez, who homered and tripled on his way to scoring three runs. 

City entered the bottom of the ninth frame down, 8-6, after a see-saw battle that featured three ties and three lead changes throughout the game. 

Sophomore catcher Alejandro Gonzalez started off the ninth inning rally with a double, followed by a walk from Jacob Pfitzner, who homered in the eighth inning, bringing his state-leading home run total to 15. 

San Diego City College outfielder Landyn Magina (5) steals second base just under the tag of Mesa infielder Andrew Ramirez (2) in City’s 9-8 victory at Morley Field Friday, April 19, 2024. Photo by Danny Straus/City Times Media


After a single from Jesse Chacon brought home Gonzalez from second base, Chaz Kaneakua then reached on a fielder’s choice after Mesa’s first baseman dropped what would’ve been the second out of a double play, but that error allowed Pfitzner to score and Kaneakua to advance to third base. 

This play came with controversy, as it appeared that Kaneakua also scored on a poor relay throw by Mesa’s first basemen, causing City’s team to run on the field as if they had walked off. 

After a long talk between umpires and City College manager Chris Brown, it was ruled that there was a time out mid play and the potential scoring runner had to go back to third base. 

Coach Brown expressed his frustrations with the call after the game. 

“We really felt that the ball (was) still in play before time was called,” Brown said, “and there’s no reason to call a timeout if the ball is still in play.”

Undeterred by having to pull his team celebrating off the field and start play again, Coach Brown saw the silver lining in the umpire’s call. 

“It just gave us another opportunity. These guys battle hard. This group is a group that you never count out. We’ll stay in it until the end, and I’m very proud.”

Despite a slow start to the season, City has now won seven of its last eight games going into a three-game series against PCAC first-place Palomar (26-9, 19-2 PCAC) that starts April 23.   


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About the Contributor
Danny Straus
Danny Straus, Multimedia Journalist, City Times - Spring 2024
Danny Straus has a bachelor's degree in English. He is returning due to an interest in voice acting, radio, and journalism. Straus grew up in Maplewood New Jersey with his sister Anna. He is also an expert writer who enjoys writing reflective poetry in his spare time. Straus's goal is to navigate multiple avenues of journalism to see what kind of journalist he wishes to become. Straus also hopes to discover his "radio voice" and understand voice acting on a deeper level. Straus is interested in travel and enjoys basketball, cooking, and music.
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