Offense Struggles in Loss to Palomar  

Photo by Sarah Uribe
Photo by Sarah Uribe

It was a sluggish performance for the Riverside City College baseball team as they hosted Palomar for the first game of a two-game series on Friday night. The Tigers mustered a mere five hits with a season-low one run leading to a defeat.  

Sophomore starter Hayden Coon took to the rubber for his third start of the year and got off to a strong start by blanking the Comets through the opening three frames. He began his outing with two consecutive strikeouts looking backed by an inning ending groundout to freshman shortstop Robert Phelps. He worked out of a bases loaded jam in the second inning by fielding a comebacker right to him.  

His third inning was equally as impressive despite giving up a leadoff, infield single. He picked off a runner at first base and followed by forcing a groundout to freshman third baseman Gage Gonzales.  

The Tigers did not record a single hit until sophomore right fielder Nathan Aldaz poked a single to center field in the bottom of the third inning with two outs.  

Palomar followed by scoring six runs in the ensuing three innings with Coon (1-2) being tabbed with five of them. Freshman reliever Dakota Gray entered in the top of the sixth inning and allowed one run.  

Riverside scored their lone run in the bottom of the seventh inning. Sophomore first baseman Jordan Ruiz led the inning off with a walk, then advanced to second on a passed ball with one out. Freshman third baseman Devean Alvarez and Aldaz followed with consecutive free passes to set up a bases-loaded situation for freshman pinch hitter Derek Hurtado. He wore a pitch off the arm, sending home Ruiz.  

Freshman relievers Charlie McBride and Matt Hudson combined for the final two shutout innings. Hudson fanned one batter.  

Aldaz had another strong day by going 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. He is 5-for-7 in his last two starts. Sophomore left fielder Adrian Arechiga barreled two hits in his second-straight start.