By Carlos Alvarez
The No. 16 East Los Angeles baseball team moved into a second place tie in the South Coast Conference with No. 7-ranked Mt. San Antonio and LA Harbor colleges after their second consecutive win over Pasadena City College, 3-0, yesterday.
The Huskies, 12-8 overall and 5-3 in the South Coast Conference, will try to get their second straight conference sweep when they face Pasadena at Brookside Park tomorrow at noon.
“It’s very important we get the sweep on Saturday. We want to win as many games possible in conference to be better position at the end of the season,” Assistant Head Coach Phillip Valdez said.
The Huskies, who continue to play home games on the road, due to the continued renovation of the East Los Angeles College baseball field, have won four straight after losing to Long Beach City College on March 12, 8-2.
The Huskies were led by the pitching duo of Frankie Wright and Robert Engels.
Wright (5-1) pitched five 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing four hits while winning his third consecutive start. “Wright pitched well. He has been consistent for us all season,” Valdez said.
Wright was relieved by Engels in a crucial situation in the sixth inning. Engels entered the game with one out and two runners on base. He was able to strand the Lancers runners by recording the last two outs and going on to pitch three more scoreless innings. He recorded his second save of the season.
“He has been our best reliever all season and is one of our leaders. For him to come in and shut them out was big,” Valdez said.
The Huskies were unable to produce much offense against Lancers starting pitcher Evan Stransky. Stransky (1-4) hurled a complete game in a losing effort, pitching eight dominant innings, allowing three runs (one earned) off of six hits while striking out four.
“He was very effective. He mixed his pitches well against us. He threw the ball very well,” Valdez said.
ELAC took a 1-0 lead in the second inning due to Pasadena’s defense. Lancers right fielder Niko Horwith dropped a routine fly ball that scored Kyle Peralta, who had singled to start the inning.
The Huskies added two more runs in the game providing the pitching staff a 3-0 lead that they were able to maintain.” We took advantage of their mistakes,” Valdez said.
The Lancers stranded seven runners on base for the game failing to take advantage of scoring opportunities. Pasadena (3-17, 1-7) is currently in last place of the SCC standings. The Lancers have lost seven straight conference games while averaging four runs per game during their losing streak.