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Olympian survives late scare

06/07/2014, 3:52pm PDT
By Craig Malveaux

Eagles hold on to defeat Mar Vista for San Diego Section Division IV title

The Olympian baseball team (shown celebrating a playoff win earlier in the week) had more to cheer about Saturday after defeating Mar Vista for the Division IV title.

Ahead by two runs, Olympian encountered trouble.

Mar Vista had runners at the corners with one out in the top of the seventh inning when the batter dropped a ball into shallow center. It landed beyond the outstretched hands of the second baseman, who gathered the ball and forced the runner at second for what was scored a fielder’s choice RBI.

Despite hitting a batter to put the potential go-ahead run on base, Olympian relief pitcher Daniel Porras maintained his composure. The senior forced a routine grounder to second, ending Mar Vista’s rally as the Eagles defeated the Mariners 5-4 to capture the San Diego Section Division IV baseball title Saturday at USD’s Fowler Park.

“He’s one of the Little Leaguers from Park View, the team in the Little League World Series, so he has ice water in his veins,” acting coach Cedric Nealy said of Porras. “You give him the baseball, he closes it out.”

Olympian head coach Lloyd Dawson, who’s in his first year guiding the program, was unable to attend the game because of work.

“He had to do his job, put money on the table for his family, so we wanted to do our jobs on the field and win this championship for him,” senior outfielder Victor Ramirez said of the first baseball title in Olympian’s history.

Five players recorded one RBI apiece for the second-seeded Eagles (16-16), including junior third baseman Abraham Villafana, who doubled to left in the bottom of the first to provide the Eagles with a 1-0 lead. Ramirez followed with an RBI double.

No. 4 Mar Vista (19-14) equalized in the top of the second, but an Olympian three-run third inning wedged separation.

“Plenty of off-speed pitching today from our No. 3 guy,” Nealy said of Eagles starting pitcher Austin Mead, who lasted six innings. “We tried to force some grounders and let our infielders make plays.”

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