Batter Up!

Team dad Doug Tower (left) fist bumps Amari Yolas after a spirited junior varsity game Saturday afternoon at George Robert Field.
Photos by Rich Schmitt/Staff Photographer

Pali High Varsity Baseball Avenges Last Year’s Loss to Alumni with 6-2 Triumph 

By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor

For a team that played its last competitive contest at Dodger Stadium one might think last Saturday’s annual alumni game would be no big deal considering the season is two weeks away.

That wasn’t the case for the City Open Division finalist Dolphins, who sought to avenge last year’s 4-2 defeat and did so despite the best alumni turnout in Coach Mike Voelkel’s tenure.

Matty Gottsman slides to second base in the JV game.

“I’m starting my 13th year and we had around 30 guys come out,” he said. “This is the biggest  showing we’ve ever had.”

After the Dolphins’ JV beat the old-timers 15-1 in the afternoon game, the varsity prevailed 6-2 under the lights at George Robert Field.   

Former major league pitcher Jon Leicester (Class of 1997) got the start on the mound for the alumni, whose lineup was full of Voelkel’s former players, including Anthony Poulos (Class of ‘14), Cade Hulse (Class of ‘14), Augie Sylk (Class of ‘17) and Henry Coquillard (Class of ‘17).

Brady Kates had the key hit for the varsity—a bases-clearing double—and Jabe Payne had two doubles. Cord Vanley and Nate Akiba each pitched 1-2-3 innings and Kates, Vanley, Julian Jacobson, Miles Kirshner, Ryan Ornest and Julian Scissors were the winning coaches.    

The Dolphins won 26 games and went undefeated in Western League play last spring before falling 9-5 to Birmingham in the City final. They scrimmage Narbonne on Tuesday in Harbor City.