Though the Lancers were ahead or within striking distance for most of the game, the wheels fell off in the later innings and PCC fell 10-3 to the Mt. SAC Mounties on Tuesday afternoon at Robinson Park.
“We played a good game, things got away from us in the end,” said head coach Monica Tantlinger. “I still don’t think this team knows how good they can be. If we play like we believe we can win, a lot of things could have been different.”
PCC drew first blood in the bottom of the third inning when freshman outfielders Mariah Quintana and Yecenia Cardenas started things off with back-to-back singles. Following a failed sacrifice bunt, Tantlinger put on a double steal to advance both runners into scoring position.
Both runners would score on an error by shortstop Celina Felix as she delivered a low throw to first after fielding a high bouncing ground ball. Freshman catcher Holly Riker-Sloan followed by crushing a double to left-center, giving the Lancers a 3-0 lead.
Mt. SAC answered back with two runs in the fourth, and another three in the fifth. There was a bit of a scare in that fifth inning when Sloan had to exit the game due to what was thought to have been a fractured arm. The batter swung and missed on a changeup, but caught Sloan’s glove-side arm with her follow-through. According to Tantlinger, she suffered a deep bone bruise, not a fracture, and will be okay.
After a one-two-three inning in the top of the sixth, PCC looked like they had a bit of momentum, but some questionable umpiring took the wind out of their sails. Freshman shortstop Anais Sustayta looped a fly ball behind first base that the second baseman misplayed in fair ground, and then booted into foul territory. As she rounded first to take second, the umpires looked at each other in confusion as to whether the ball was fair or foul.
As a result, neither of them were in position to make a call on the play at second, where the ball was clearly bobbled as Sustayta slid into second. The home plate umpire finally looked over, and called an out after the dust settled. The base umpire never actually turned around to acknowledge what was going on. The next two batters were retired.
The Mounties put the game out of reach by adding five more runs, including back-to-back homeruns to left-center in their half of the seventh. Despite the lopsided score, Sloan said that she was pleased with the overall performance of the pitchers.
“Defense came out strong today, but we could not get the timely hits we needed on offense,” said sophomore Jennifer Pegg. “As far as conference goes, I feel like if we play to our fullest potential, then we should be able to get things done and end up where we want to be.”
The Lancers travel to LA Harbor College on Thursday afternoon. First pitch is at 3 p.m.