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Jewel City Major squad doesn't quit in 10-9 win

Baseball: Jewel City rallies from three runs down three times to beat Tujunga.

July 07, 2012|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com

MONTROSE — Phillip Palmer couldn't help but use a cliché to describe what his Jewel City/Jewish War Veterans Major All-Star baseball team was able to do against Tujunga in a District 16 tournament consolation bracket game.

Jewel City found itself down three runs on three different occasions Saturday at Montrose Community Park, but never pressed the panic button en route to a 10-9 victory decided on a two-run single from Colin Kieffer in the bottom of the fifth.

Palmer praised his team's resilience, as it overcame five errors — while Tujunga played error free — to save itself from heartbreak for the second day in a row after it fell to Burbank, 8-7, on a walk-off home run Friday.

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"It's one of the strange things about this game because to this point we have played really well, almost flawless defense," said Palmer, whose team will play Foothill, which it already defeated in the tournament, 8-2, on Thursday, today at 5:30 p.m. at Montrose. "I think it's really a show of how good they are that they can overcome those things. It's such a cliché, but they believed they could do it and they proved that they could."

There were plenty of Jewel City heroics in the game, most notably Steven Gonzalez coming in to pitch in relief and getting the final two outs of the game with a runner at third.

"I was nervous," said Gonzalez, who also went two for three with two runs batted in. "[Coach] told me to throw a changeup, but I said I wanted to throw a fastball, so I did. I just relaxed and waited until the batter was ready and I just threw."

Tujunga's Kyle Edwards reached second base to lead off the top of the sixth inning when he hit a high fly ball to center field that was dropped when the outfielder slipped at the warning track.

Edwards moved to third on an Aurelio Colon groundout to shortstop, which prompted Palmer to make the move to a reliever. Gonzalez struck out the next two batters to end the game and Tujunga's season.

Jewel City took its first lead in the bottom of the fifth inning. Anthony Ascencio and Matthew Moyer reached based with consecutive one-out walks and Gonzalez drove Ascencio home when he boomed a RBI double over the Tujunga right fielder to bring Jewel City within one run, 9-8.

Kieffer followed it up with his two-RBI line-drive single to right field to put Jewel City ahead for the first time in the game and for good.

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