Falcons fall 13-5 to Porterville in conference opener

Elias Garcia (Photo by Gina Jason)
Elias Garcia (Photo by Gina Jason)

Elias Garcia (3 for 5, RBI) and Hunter Jenkins (3 for 4, 2 runs, RBI) both had 3 hits to lead the Falcons' offense in a 13-5 loss to visiting Porterville College on Tuesday in both teams' Central Valley Conference opener.

The three-game conference series continues on Thursday (Feb. 20) at Porterville with Game 3 set for Saturday (Feb. 22) back in Coalinga.

Porterville erupted for a season-high 17 hits and 13 runs led by an impressive 3 for 4 day at the plate by Colin King. His RBI single in the top of the first inning gave PC an early 1-0 lead. Porterville struck again for another run in the second, thanks to a run-scoring single from Andres Garza that drove in Brandon Dodd.

West Hills got on the board in the bottom of the third, rallying for a pair of runs off PC starter Landon Jordan to tie up the ball game. The Falcons quickly loaded the bases to open the frame and got back-to-back sacrifice flies from Garcia and Agustine Castro to drive in Bennett Hergenroeder and Jenkins with runs.

The Falcons came back in the fifth to take the lead. Castro smacked an RBI single to left field to drive in Jenkins and give West Hills a 3-2 advantage.

But that lead didn't last long as Porterville went up for good in the sixth. Aaron Hernandez drove in Fernando Montoya with a single and Garza capped the rally with his second RBI of the game that brought in Santiago Sanchez.

Leading 4-3, PC put the game out of reach by scoring five times in the eighth and four final runs in the ninth. King smacked a three-run double and Montoya added a two-run single for the big blows in the eighth. King added an RBI double in the ninth while Gomez and Sanchez also drove in runs.

West Hills took advantage of a two-out error in the eighth to score two final runs but the deficit was too much to overcome.

Jordan went the distance for the Pirates, allowing 5 runs (2 earned) and 10 hits. He struck out four and walked two.

Garza (2 for 5, 2 runs), Montoya (2 for 4), and Sanchez (2 for 5) all drove in two runs each while Isaiah Gomez (3 for 5) had 3 hits and scored 3 runs.

Karter Pate took the loss for West Hills, giving up 4 runs and 10 hits over 7 innings.  

West Hills dropped to 4-9 and 0-1 in the CVC while Porterville improved to 3-14 overall and 1-0.