By Aaron Valdez
In a year that saw four Pasadena schools make significant runs in their respective playoff campaigns, the Polytechnic Panthers etched their own names in the history books by trouncing Moreno Valley 6-1 in the CIF-SS Division 6 championship game on June 2.
This season, the Panthers were dominant, winning 27 games and only losing three times to eventual Division 4 runners-up Monrovia, Division 5 champions Temple City and Salesian.
After wrapping up the regular season on a seven-game winning streak, Polytechnic continued to torch its competition in the playoffs, taking each game by an average of 7.4 runs. Ganesha was the only opponent to be able to score more than once against the Panthers during the two teams’ quarterfinal match-up.
Polytechnic wound up meeting Moreno Valley in the title game where the Vikings quickly found out they were also no match for the Panthers’ talented squad. While the Panthers tacked on a couple runs in the second and fifth innings to take a 2-0 lead, it was Matt Queen who reigned supreme on the mound.
The senior pitcher played in the semifinal game against Pomona but was taken out early due to a migraine. However, Queen managed to recover just in time for the final as he tossed six innings while only giving up four hits.
Queen’s efforts allowed the Panthers to effectively put the game away in the sixth inning as they opened up a 6-0 advantage.
The late-game rally was fueled by a few Moreno Valley errors and a big two-run RBI single by Cameron McFarlane. The Viking added a consolation run in the final frame but it was not enough to deny Polytechnic’s first CIF championship since 2011.
Along with Queen’s performance, Panthers Joe Masters, Franco Alonso and Ty Evans had major contributions toward the team’s offensive efforts.