Titans upset Everett in round one

05/27/2011 12:21
 The Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges championship tournament is officially underway.

The Titan baseball team came from behind in a big way to stun top-seeded Everett Community College 9-4 in the opening game of the tournament.

“We came out to play. We were a little unsure of ourselves at first but then we finally got it going,” first baseman Darrell Hunter said.

The game started off in favor of the Titans as they took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning.

Sophomore centerfielder Jimmy Sanchez led off the game with a single and then advanced to second on a balk by the Trojans starting pitcher.  After another single by fellow classmate Matt Myrmo, sophomore Darrell Hunter came up to the plate and scored Sanchez from third on a fielder’s choice.

The score would stay in favor of the Titans until Everett evened the game on a solo homerun by leadoff batter David Amberson in the bottom of the third inning.

LCC took the lead again the very next inning on a two-out, solo homerun by freshman catcher Jordyn Van Atta.

The score would remain 2-1 in favor of the Titans until the seventh inning came around.

Everett took the lead and knocked starting pitcher Nick Phillips out of the game by scoring three runs on four hits.  Freshman Zach Kayser stopped the Trojan rally by striking out the third out of the inning to get the Titans back into the dugout.

“All my pitches were working but the first run that I gave up was a change up inside,” Phillips said.

LCC wasted no time getting back into the game.

In the top of the eighth inning, it would only take the Titans two pitches to even the score.

After Myrmo led off with a hit-by-pitch, Hunter stepped up to the plate and crushed a 450-ft homerun over the centerfield on the first pitch he saw to tie the score at 4-4.

“We got a little scared. They put a little pressure on us, but we made some good plays and they just got some good hits on the ball,” team captain Joe Offer said.

The Titans wouldn’t be finished and would not let up.

A single by sophomore Skip Spencer and a double by fellow sophomore Tym Pearson put runners at second and third with no outs and later in the inning Van Atta was intentionally walked to load the bases.  Another strike out produced the second out of the inning but then Offer stepped to the plate.

After falling behind in the count 0-2 and fouling off multiple pitches, Offer hit a two-strike grand slam over the left fence to give the Titans a commanding 8-4 lead.

“Oh man, it felt great and you know I’m not a homerun hitter so it was nice to get under the ball,” Offer said.

The Titans would add an insurance run in the top of the ninth when Pearson scored Hunter with a sacrifice bunt for a 9-4 lead.

“I think it shows a lot about the fortitude of this group. When they get punched they punch back and they’re not afraid to fight back,” head coach Dean Stiles said.

Spencer started the ninth in relief of Kayser on the mound and after giving up a leadoff hit, he struck out the side to end the game and preserve the Titan victory.

For the game, Sanchez was 2-for-4, Myrmo was 2-for-3, Hunter was 1-for-4 with three RBI’s and two runs, and Offer was 2-for-4 with a homerun, four RBI’s and a run.

Phillips started on the mound and threw the first 6 1/3 innings giving up only four runs on seven hits.

Kayser threw 1 1/3 innings giving up only a hit while getting the victory and Spencer got the save throwing a scoreless ninth with three strikeouts.

The Titans return to action on Friday, May 27 when they take on the winner of the Pierce-Columbia Basin game at 4:35 p.m. in the winners bracket.