By STEVEN FOWLER
The Pima Community College’s baseball team (9-0) is off to an unprecedented start after opening 2016 with dominating series sweeps against Utah State University-Eastern on Jan. 29-30 and El Paso Community College on Feb. 5-6 at the West Campus.
In game one, the Aztecs dominated Eastern 13-0 in a five-inning win. Right-hander Daniel Tolano earned the win after pitching a no-hitter and striking out eight batters on 65 pitches.
“We have started the season the way we wanted to. I feel like the no-hitter gave our staff the motivation to do good,” Tolano said. “I wasn’t really thinking about it on the mound. I just when out there and tried my best to execute every pitch.”
In game two, Pima won 12-2 in seven innings behind a complete game win by freshman left-hander Ernesto Romero.
Despite missing a home run short of the cycle, Ramsower finished 4-for-5 with two RBI.
“The main difference is that this year’s team has many returning sophomores,” sophomore Ivan Estrella said.
On Jan. 30, the Aztecs hosted another double-header against Utah State University-Eastern.
In game one, the Aztecs won 5-0. Freshman right-hander Trevelle Hill allowed three hits, seven strikeouts and no walks in a complete game
In the second game, the Aztecs won 18-3. Freshman right-hander Andres Hackman earned his first win of the season after pitching three innings and allowing two runs.
“We have a loaded lineup top to bottom and some solid arms in the pitching rotation,” Northrup said.
In the first game against El Paso, PCC won 10-2 in seven innings.
Tolano followed his no-hitter with a complete game win.
The second game against El Paso was the team’s toughest competition of the season despite winning 5-4.
Romero threw five and one-third innings and earned the win.
“The atmosphere is great right now,” Northrup said.” It’s important to get off to a good start early on in the season.
Feb. 9: University of Arizona club team, West Campus, 2 p.m.
Feb. 13: @ Glendale CC, noon & 2 p.m.
Feb. 16: South Mountain CC, West Campus, 1 p.m. & 3 p.m.
Feb. 20 @ Phoenix College, noon & 2 p.m.
Feb. 23 @ Paradise Valley CC, 1 p.m. 3 p.m.