Orange County Shuts Out Santa Barbara; Seals Spoil Blake’s two-HR Performance

Updated: July 5, 2019

July 4, 2019
Santa Barbara, CA

Starting pitcher Nick Jones (Georgia Southern) pitched four scoreless innings, striking out six, and he and four relievers combined to pitch a shutout and combined for 14 strikeouts to lead the Orange County Riptide to a 3-0 win over the Santa Barbara Foresters today at Pershing Park. Jones struck out two in his first inning today and picked off the only runner who reached base to start the scoreless outing. He then struck out three in the second inning, pitching around a Dru Baker (Texas Tech) one-out single, got defensive help in the third when the leadoff hitter he walked was erased off the bases at the front end of a groundball double-play and, again, when Eric Kennedy (Texas) hit a two-out single, Kennedy was thrown out trying to steal second base, and then Jones pitched around a two-out walk to retire three of the four batters he faced in the fourth. The Riptide pitchers got all the run support they would need in the bottom half of the third inning when Blake Evans (Georgia Southern) hit a one-out double, a dropped third strike put runners on the corners, a double-steal plated one run and a Foresters error plated another to give Orange County a 2-0 lead. Chase Lyford was the first reliever inserted into the game for the Riptide and pitched around a leadoff walk and a one-out hit batter by striking out two and getting a groundball out to pitch a scoreless fifth inning and retired the side in order in the sixth. Andrew Davis then pitched a one-two-three seventh inning with two strikeouts, Taylor Pendley (Howard) struck out two in a scoreless eighth and got the first two hitters in the ninth before the Foresters loaded the bases on Baker’s second single of the game, a walk and an error. Tanner King relieved Pendley and struck out the only batter he faced to close out the Riptide win. Ryan Bergert (West Virginia) started on the mound for Santa Barbara, allowing the first two Riptide runs and four hits while striking out four over four innings. Brock Helverson (West Virginia) pitched a one-two-three fifth inning in relief of Bergert, Connor Woods (UNLV) pitched the sixth scoreless, assisted by a runner thrown out at home plate trying to score from second base on a two-out single by Connor Aoki (Binghamton), and walked the one batter he faced in the seventh before being relieved by Brad Demco, who walked the first batter he faced and got a pop-fly out before Carson Matthews (BYU) singled in Orange County’s third run of the game. Matthews was thrown out trying to advanced the second base on his single and Demco struck out the last batter of the seventh and all three batters he faced in the eighth inning before Nico O’Donnell (Texas) retired three straight with two strikeouts to pitch a scoreless ninth.

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Elsewhere around the CCL today:

Healdsburg, CA

Robert Lujan (Cal St East Bay) doubled twice, tripled and drove in two, Drew Lowe (Oral Roberts) had three hits, two RBI and scored twice, and Alex Schmitz (Oral Roberts) hit an RBI-double late in the game to lead the San Francisco Seals to a 10-8 win over the Healdsburg Prune Packers today at Recreation Park and spoil a two-home run performance by the Packers’ Cam Blake (Texas A&M). Lujan’s first double, which drove in two, capped a three-run third inning that got the Seals back into the game after Healdsburg scored four times in their first at bat, getting their first four hitters on base on an error and three hits, and scoring on an RBI-single by Bryan Sturges (UTSA) and a three-run home run by Blake. After Lujan’s double in the third inning got the Seals to within one, the Packers answered with two runs in their half of the inning when Sturges and Blake reached base to leadoff the inning on a single and a walk, respectively, Sturges scored on the first of Travis Turney’s (Portland) three singles in the game, and Blake scored on a wild pitch to make the score 6-3. Healdsburg starting pitcher Morgan White (Portland), who retired six of the first seven batters he faced before an error to leadoff the third inning started the San Francisco rally, held the 6-3 lead until the fifth inning when the Seals scored once when Marco Castillo (Claremont McKenna) hit a leadoff single, Lujan’s second double of the game put two runners in scoring position and an RBI-goundout made the score 6-4. White finished the fifth inning by stranding two runners on base without incurring further damage and was relieved to start the sixth inning by Hunter Mayo who surrendered the Seals’ fifth run when Lowe singled for the second time in the game, advanced around the bases on a walk, error and a passed ball to get San Francisco back within one. Sam Gomez (Citrus JC), who relieved San Francisco’s starting pitcher Will Moscato (Macalester) to start the sixth inning, held the Packers scoreless over the next two innings, pitching around a pair of two-out singles in the sixth and retiring the side in order in the seventh until the Seals took their first lead of the game in the top of the eighth when Schmitz hit his RBI-double to tie the score and, one-out later, scored the go-ahead run on a passed ball. Gomez retired the only two batters he faced to start the bottom of the eighth inning before Peyton Baker (Alabama A&M) came into strikeout one to hold the Seals lead 7-6. The Seals scored three important insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning when Lowe drove in two runs with his third single of the game and then scored on a Gianni Bloom two-out single. Those runs were important because Blake hit his second home run of the game, this time a two-run shot, that would’ve tied the score otherwise. Baker struck out the last batter of the game to close out the Seals’ win.

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