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Mid-Season Recap

Mid-Season Recap imagePosted: 4/24/2009 12:42:00 AM

Tacoma, WA - It has been an up and down league schedule for the TCC Titans, as they started off hot, jumping out to a 4-0 start, but series losses to Green River and Lower Columbia have put them in third place. Recent series victories against Pierce and Centralia, though, have put them squarely in the playoff picture. They now stand three and a half games in front of 4th place Grays Harbor for the third and final playoff spot in the Western Division.

Heading into the Green River series, the Titans had been rolling, sitting at 4-0 and in first place in the division. Offensive struggles and a couple of bullpen implosions during the weekend helped seal their fate. Game 1 went 4-0 in favor of the Gators, with Freshman Colton Brown taking the hard-luck loss. Despite racking up 7 hits in the game, the Titan offense failed to capitalize on any of its scoring opportunities. Game 2 went for the Gators as well, 11-4. The game was close until the 6th inning, when starter Sean Santschi and the bullpen allowed five runs. Tacoma again outhit their opponent 6-5, but were not timely in their execution. Game 3 followed the script of Game 2, as the game was tied 2-2 going into the 6th, when once again walks and errors doomed the Titans. Green River put up six runs in the frame to pull away for the 8-2 win.

TCC rebounded from the tough losses with two straight against Pierce. Game 1 was another tight affair, as sophomore Alex Reyes had to come through with a 2-run triple in the final inning to claim the win for the Titans and starter Erik Hoium. Game 2 was more comfortable, as Brown shut down the Raider hitters, holding them to a single unearned run to earn his sixth victory of the year.

The doubleheader at Centralia continued the winning streak for the Titans, as they outlasted the Blazers 8-3 and 4-3. Jason Hollinger got the victory in Game 1, while Santschi earned the win in Game 2. Taylor Zambard and Ryne Briley led the way offensively in the first game with two hits apiece. Zambard also scored twice. Matt Gomes and Ashley Scott each had two hits in Game 2.

Lower Columbia came into the series in first place and left the same way. Game 1 began just the way the Titans drew it up, with leadoff hitter Zambard getting hit by the very first pitch of the game, then coming home to score on Collin Bennett's two-out double. Scott followed that up with a single of his own, as did Matt Gomes, who drove home Bennett with the base hit to give Tacoma quick 2-0 lead. They added one in the fourth, but immediately gave it back in the bottom half of the inning. Again the Titans rallied and stretched their lead to 4-1 in the fifth, but a two 2-out errors in the bottom of the fifth led to five unearned runs and suddenly TCC trailed 6-4. They never recovered and eventually lost 9-4. Game 2 was a matchup of two of the best freshman pitchers in the NWAACC with Brown going for Tacoma, and Tim Culligan starting for LCC. While Brown pitched admirably, only allowing six hits and three runs in the complete game effort, Culligan was better, stifling the Titan hitters on just one hit and zero runs. Game 3 was doomed from the start, as Tacoma gave LCC five unearned runs in the first inning on three errors. After that, there was not much suspense, as TCC struggled to keep their heads up and get any momentum back, eventually losing 15-4.

The Titans (8-6 league, 14-11 overall) travel to Aberdeen tomorrow to take on Grays Harbor in a doubleheader beginning at 1:00 p.m. Scheduled starters are Santschi and Micah Deibell. Lower Columbia returns to Tacoma on Sunday for another doubleheader also beginning at 1:00 p.m. Scheduled starters are Hoium and Brown.

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