LONG BEACH — San Diego Mesa College avoided elimination from the state community college baseball tournament on the first day with a 15-3 victory over Merced Friday afternoon.
The No. 8-seeded Olympians (34-7) were defeated in the opening round by No. 1 San Mateo, 9-3, Friday morning on the campus field at Cal State Long Beach. San Diego Mesa came back to hit four home runs in the afternoon game against Merced.
Left fielder Zac Valade homered on the second pitch of the game off losing pitcher Mike Ordez (6-4). Valdez also had two doubles, a single and four RBIs.
Catcher Larry Oedewaldt hit a bases-empty home run in the third and Mike Thomas hit a three-run homer in the fifth. Winning pitcher Jeff Oswalt (14-1) hit his first home run of the season with nobody on in the seventh.
The loss eliminated No. 5 Merced (23-14), and San Diego Mesa plays tonight at 7 at Blair Field. The Olympians' opponent won't be decided until this afternoon.
"We had a positive meeting after the first game, and we came back and did the job in the second game," San Diego Mesa Coach Eric Swanson said. "I don't even want to think of the odds of coming though the loser's bracket to win this thing. All I'm thinking about is the game tomorrow night."
Merced and San Diego Mesa combined to use nine pitchers and a total of 40 players.
In the loss to San Mateo, Greg Page (14-2) had a three-hitter into the ninth inning before the Olympians scored three runs. San Mateo will play Rancho Santiago.
Dean Wilkins (13-5) took the loss.