Garcia throws first PCC baseball's first no-hitter since 2018 as Aztecs run-rule GateWay
The Pima Community College baseball team (25-11, 12-8 in ACCAC) fired on all cylinders on Saturday as they took two games from GateWay Community College (13-22, 8-12).
Freshman Darius Garcia threw the team's first no-hitter since Mason Myhre against Chandler-Gilbert Community College on April 28, 2018.
The offense scored 24 runs on 26 hits for the day. Sophomore Preston Clifford (Sabino HS) and freshman Gage Mestas, the No. 1 and No. 2 hitters in the line-up, went a combined 9 for 14 with 10 RBIs and seven runs scored. Freshman Trent Kiraly closed out the day going 3 for 6 with five RBIs and two runs scored.
Game 1: Pima CC Aztecs 10, GateWay CC Geckos 0 (5 innings): Garcia threw a no-hitter in five innings, as he finished with seven strikeouts and two walks.
The Aztecs broke open a scoreless game with 10 runs in the 4th inning. Clifford and Mestas hit back-to-back 2-run RBI singles. With two outs, freshman Andrew Stucky (Canyon del Oro HS) hit an RBI single to drive in Mestas to make it 6-0.
Two batters later, Kiraly hit a 3-run bomb to left field to make it 9-0. Sophomore Josh Lackner capped off the barrage with an RBI single to score sophomore Fernando Loera.
Kiraly finished the game 1 for 2 with three RBIs and two runs scored. Clifford and Mestas each finished 2 for 3 with two RBIs and a run scored while Loera was 2 for 3 with two runs scored.
Player’s Quote: “Other than my fastball, my slider was my go-to pitch to get their hitters out,” Garcia said. “Working backwards and changing their eye level was also what helped me confuse their batters.”
GWCC 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
PCC 0 0 0 (10) x 10 10 0
W – Garcia (4-2). HR – Kiraly. SB – Clifford, Enriquez, Loera, Pintor.
Game 2: Pima CC Aztecs 14, GateWay CC Geckos 4 (7 innings): The Aztecs trailed 3-1 but scored 13 of the final 14 runs of the game.
Sophomore Romeo Ballesteros (Salpointe Catholic HS) hit a one-out single in the 7th and later scored when fellow sophomore Emilio Corona hit a walk-off RBI single to end the game.
Mestas put the Aztecs ahead 4-3 in the 3rd inning with a 2-run RBI single driving in pinch runner Isaiah Pintor (Canyon del Oro HS) and Clifford. Following a walk by Stucky, Kiraly hit a 2-run RBI single of his own scoring Mestas and Stucky as Pima took a 6-3 lead.
Mestas hit another 2-run RBI single in the 4th inning plating Pintor and Clifford once again making it 9-3.
Stucky came through on a bases-loaded situation in the 6th inning with a 3-run RBI double bringing in Pintor, Mestas and Corona. He later scored on the same play after an outfield error making it 13-4.
Mestas finished the game going 3 for 4 with four RBIs and two runs scored while Clifford led off the bottom of the 1st inning with a home run as he went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and three runs scored. Stucky was 1 for 3 with three RBIs and two runs and Kiraly went 2 for 4 with two RBIs. Corona finished 1 for 3 with an RBI and a run.
Freshman Matt Cornelius picked up the win in relief as he went two and two-third innings, giving up one run (one earned) on three hits with three strikeouts and one walk.
GWCC 0 1 2 0 1 0 0 4 9 4
PCC 1 0 5 3 0 4 1 14 16 1
W – Cornelius (3-2). 2B – Stucky, Faildo. HR – Clifford.
The Aztecs hit the road on Tuesday as they play at Chandler-Gilbert Community College. The first game of the doubleheader starts at noon.