Los Al baseball in free fall

Special to the Sun

Los Alamitos opened the second round of Sunset League play on an off note Wednesday afternoon, as visiting Edison used a pair of big innings early to wind up with an 11-1 win over the Griffins.

With the loss, the squad’s third straight in league play, Los Al falls to 2-4 and 9-8 overall. Edison, the league leaders, stays atop the league at 5-1 and 11-6 overall.

Griffin Coach Aaron Moore said his squad’s lack of maturity in big games showed.

“We simply didn’t compete today,” Moore said matter-of-factly afterwards. “I’m very disappointed with the effort.”

Moore said coming off a consolation championship in the OC Nissan Tournament the week before had his squad on a high note. Still, he made no excuses about his squad’s play.

“We simply don’t know how to handle playing in the big game or leading up to the big games,” Moore said. “With the coaching staff’s expectations, the players may have put a lot of pressure on themselves.”

Los Al picked up just six hits in the game and stranded eight runners, six of them in scoring position. It was an improvement from the first meeting where the squad had just four hits and did not have a runner reach third base.

The Griffins’ problem of getting an opportune hit reared its ugly head throughout the contest. Patrick Ivison opened the first with a leadoff walk and moved to second on a passed ball. Edison lefty Henry Owens struck out the next three hitters, part of 12 strikeouts on the day, to keep the game scoreless.

Edison struck for four runs in the second to give the Chargers all the offense they’d need. Los Alamitos got on the board with a two-out rally in the third.

Ivison was hit by an Owens pitch. Frankie Padulo’s single, the first Griffin hit, moved the runner over. The hit parade continued as senior Brad Hartong stroked another single to left, plating Ivison. A walk to Nick Vilter loaded the bases … which they would remain as the next hitter struck out.

Starting pitcher Kyle Ferramola was knocked from the mound after a leadoff walk in the third. Jared Cortez came on to get out of the jam, including picking a runner off of first. Edison would strike for four runs in the fourth on just one hit. Three walks, a balk and an error helped Edison take an 8-1 lead. Edison would score twice in the sixth and once in the seventh to end the scoring.

Los Al threatened in its last two at bats. Vilter beat out an infield single with one gone in the sixth. Michael Farris was hit by a pitch one out later but the pair were stranded as the next hitter struck out.

Singles by Ivison and Padulo got a two-out rally started in the seventh but a strikeout ended the 2:42 contest.