It was a rough day for the Rio Hondo College pitching staff on Tuesday. Visiting Pasadena City College put together a trio of four-run rallies as well as a three-run frame to hand the Roadrunners a 16-2 South Coast Conference loss in Whittier in the opening game of a three-game set.
The defeat dropped Rio Hondo to 8-15 overall and 4-8 in South Coast Conference North Division play.
The Roadrunners actually led early, scoring a run in the bottom of the first inning off PCC starter Patrick Pena. Consecutive singles by Ricky Akles and Jorge Centeno to start the inning and a sacrifice bunt by Jesus Maldonado put runners on second and third with one out. Jordan Salgado followed with a sac fly to drive in Akles with the game's first run.
But that lead only lasted until the third. Pasadena put up four runs off Rio Hondo starter Andrew Martinez to go ahead for good. The Lancers added a run in the fifth before things got ugly late. PCC scored four in the seventh, three times in the eighth, and four final runs in the ninth.
Chris Rivera smashed a two-out, solo home run in the ninth for the Roadrunners' other run.
Martinez took the loss after allowing three earned runs and six hits over 4 1/3 innings. He struck out four and walked three.
The conference series between the two squads resumes on Thursday (Mar. 28) with Game 2 in Pasadena at 2:30 p.m. with the finale on Saturday (Mar. 30) back in Whittier at 12 p.m.