| July 27, 2021
Things are heating up in the CCL, and with only one more week left in the regular season, it's now or never for the teams fighting for playoff spots. As it stands now, the Prune Packers, Potters, Saints, Blues, and Riptide would be the five representatives to compete in Lincoln next week for the championship. The race is tight in the South, as the Oaks are only a half-game back of the Riptide for the fifth playoff spot. A lot is on the line in the final week. Here is the CCL week six (July 19-25) review for all 10 clubs.
CCL North Division
(Team, league record, week record)
Healdsburg Prune Packers: 20-4 overall, 5-1 Week 6
The Prune Packers continued to make impactful strides this past week as they won four of their five league games, adding to their winning record. The Prune Packers had a particularly sensational game against the Mudcats on Tuesday where they defeated Solano 16-0. They finished the week with a non-league win over the West Coast Kings.
Jared Sundstrom (Santa Rosa JC) had a phenomenal week, going 9-for-25 (.360) with six RBI throughout the six games. Sundstrom now sits with a .429 batting average for the season. Torin Montgomery (Missouri) kept the Prune Packers offense strong, hitting .542 on the week with three doubles, two home runs and ten RBI.
Marvcus Guarin (Pacific) pitched a solid 3.0 innings with seven strikeouts on 13 batters faced. Guarin’s ERA now sits at a 1.22 thus far.
The Prune Packers will head into the final games of their summer season with a couple of non-conference games as well as match-ups with the Mudcats, Potters and Crawdads.
-- Andi Basista
Lincoln Potters: 14-10 overall, 5-1 Week 6
The Potters dropped the first game of the week to the Walnut Creek Crawdads, but bounced back and swept the rest of the week. They won an offensive heavy 13-11 game against the Prune Packers, followed by a series sweep against the non-conference Seattle Studs.
Jeffrey David (New Mexico) had an outstanding week at the plate, with a .519 batting average. David went 14-for-27, with five doubles, one homer and eight RBI, scoring nine runs. Chase Stanke (Minnesota) had a solid series against the Seattle Studs, going 3-6 in the box with two runs, a double, and five RBI.
Jojo Villarreal (Alvin CC) fooled hitters all week, as he had a combined 11 strikeouts in 5.1 innings, and only gave up two hits. Owen Cuffe (Abiliene Christian) struck out eight batters in four innings against the Seattle Studs.
The Potters have a full slate of CCL games going into their last stretch of the season. They're currently six games back of the Healdsburg Prune Packers, and are hoping to make a playoff run at their home turf in Lincoln, CA.
-- Gianna Cefalu
Walnut Creek Crawdads: 8-16 overall, 3-2 Week 6
The Walnut Creek Crawdads had an up-and-down week, alternating wins and losses to finish with a 3-2 record. A pair of Columbia Lions led the ‘Dads offense this week.
Outfielder Hayden Schott (Columbia) is riding a seven-game hit streak going back to last week. In five games this week, Schott slashed .409/.435/.682 and hit home runs in back-to-back games on July 24 and 25. Schott finishes the week with five RBI and five runs scored.
Infielder Seth Dardar (Columbia), is on a tear of his own, riding an 11-game hit streak; Dardar has not gone hitless since June 30. This week, Dardar went 8-for-16 (.500) with one home run, six RBI, five runs scored, four walks and just two strikeouts while sporting an OPS of 1.600.
On the mound, Foster Gifford (Wichita State) shined in Walnut Creek’s 3-2 win over the Solano Mudcats on July 22. The starter pitched 6.0 innings, allowing four hits, no earned runs and no walks while striking out six to earn the win.
The Crawdads wrap up the regular season next week with a gauntlet of CCL North opponents; facing the Potters three times, the Mudcats twice and the Prune Packers once.
-- Joe Pohoryles
Solano Mudcats: 6-18 overall, 1-4 Week 6
It was not the best week for the Mudcats, with a 14-10 victory over the Crawdads on July 21 as the only bright spot.
Even with the rough week in the win-loss column, 2021 CCL Showcase Offensive MVP Riley Lamb (USC) continues to shine at the plate. The catcher went 8-for-23 (.347) on the week with four RBI and four runs scored.
Infielder Tassos Foster (Willamette) had a strong week as well, going 5-for-15 (.333) with an OPS of .807. Foster drove in three runs of his own and walked four times, displaying terrific plate discipline.
Foster’s fellow Willamette Bearcat, Brady Joyner (Willamette), starred on the mound. Across three relief appearances, Joyner pitched 2.1 shutout innings, allowing just three hits and two walks to go with five strikeouts.
The Mudcats wrap up the regular season with six in-conference games; three against the Prune Packers, two against the Crawdads and one against the Potters.
-- Joe Pohoryles
CCL South Division
Santa Barbara Foresters: 17-7 overall, 6-0 Week 6
The Foresters had a dominant week, taking over as the top team in the CCL South after sweeping the week. The Foresters took home a win over the Saints, who were previously leading the division. Outside of the CCL South games played this week, the Foresters knocked off the Ventura County Pirates in non-league play.
Jared Thomas (Abilene Christian) hit .500 this week. His 2-for-4 performance against the Saints was instrumental in the Foresters win, as he scored the only run of the game for either team.
Justin Eckhardt (Texas) brought home a win for the Foresters on the pitching side of things. He pitched seven shutout innings against the Saints, only allowing two hits and striking out five. This game was his second win of the season, and sets him up well for the playoffs.
In the final week of the regular season, the Foresters will play another two games against Arroyo Seco, and single games against the Riptide, Oaks and Barons.
-- Emily Morton
Arroyo Seco Saints: 15-9 overall, 2-3 Week 6
The Saints had an up-and-down week, splitting games with the Barons and beating the Oaks, while losing a tight 1-0 game to the first place Foresters on Saturday night. Sunday's game was one to throw away, as they endured a 10-2 defeat to the Riptide.
Lead-off hitter Connor Bradshaw (Pepperdine) continued his hot summer, logging nine hits in 22 at bats, good for a .409 average for the week with four RBIs. Josh Cowden (BYU) has been hitting the ball exceptionally well over the past few weeks, and had two hits in all three games he played this week with a home run and three RBIs.
John Chomko (UT San Antonio) had the best start for the Saints, pitching four shutout innings against the Foresters and striking out an impressive nine batters. Only three outs were not recorded by strikeouts, as Chomko allowed just two hits and a walk.
The Saints will end their regular season with road games against the Riptide, Foresters and Oaks, with home games at the beginning of the week against the Barons and the Foresters.
-- Lucas Banks
San Luis Obispo Blues: 13-12 overall, 3-3 Week 6
The Blues took home back-to-back wins over the MLB Barons this week, with a dominant 11-4 win in the second game. The Blues took losses to the Foresters, Oaks and Riptide, but are still one game ove .500 in league play. They currently sit in third, 4.5 games behind the Foresters.
Grant Burton (Stanford) smacked his hitting performance out of the park this week. He was 3-for-6 in two games played, with a double and a home run. He's been hot recently, raising his average up 145 points since July 16. Vincenzo Bologna (Fresno State) also was solid, going 5-for-9 at the plate this week, with five runs of his own to contribute to the Blues week.
Heston Tole (Arkansas) picked up one of the team wins against the Barons. His six inning pitching performance helped out the Blues as he gave up only one hit, and no runs. Those shutout innings brought his season ERA down to a 2.90.
Next week, the Blues will play another two games against the Barons, and a single game against both the Oaks and Saints. They will also face off with the Riptide early in the week.
-- Emily Morton
Conejo Oaks: 11-13 overall, 2-4 Week 6
The Conejo Oaks had a tough start to the week, dropping games to the Foresters and Riptide, but were able to beat the Riptide and the Blues later in the week for their two wins. They finished with a loss to the Saints and a tight, 4-3 loss to the first place Foresters.
In the Oaks’ nail-biter win over the Riptide, 8-7, Greg Mehlhaff (Pepperdine) scored 2 runs on 2 hits while Brendan Bobo (Cal State Fullerton) and Raul Sandoval (UC Davis) each contributed 3 RBIs each.
Lucien Wechsberg (Oxnard College) pitched 4 strong innings against the Foresters last Tuesday, where he struck out 7 of the 18 batters faced.
The Oaks will look to finish out their summer strong, as they will play the Barons twice, and the Oaks, Riptide, Foresters and Saints once apiece. They're in a close race with the Riptide for the last of five playoff spots.
-- Andi Basista
Orange County Riptide: 12-13 overall, 4-2 Week 6
The Riptide won some key league games this week, knocking off the Blues, Oaks, Saints and Barons to win four out of their six games. They dropped games to the Oaks and Foresters in the middle of the week, but currently own the last playoff spot with a slim half-game lead over Conejo.
Terrance Simmons (UConn) was on another planet this week, going 11-for-19 with three homers and an astonishing 11 RBIs. He was huge in the Riptide's 10-2 win over the Saints, collecting four hits, including a moonshot to right center field for his fourth homer of the season. Arizona Diamondbacks draft pick Davis Diaz (Vanderbilt) was a problem for CCL pitchers all week, smacking 9 hits in 19 at bats, and accumulating a .619 on-base-percentage out of the lead-off spot.
Cade Connolly (Santa Clara) was masterful in Sunday's win over the Saints. He tossed five shutout innings, working quickly and never allowing the Saints to get any momentum against him. He also threw one inning in relief against the Blues, finishing the week with six shutout innings and allowing only three hits.
The Riptide will look to stay hot in the final week of the regular season, but will have to face the first place Foresters twice and the second place Saints once as well in their quest for the postseason. Their game against the Oaks on Saturday could prove to be pivotal for that spot, as it is the second to last game of the summer.
-- Gianna Cefalu
Academy Barons: 5-19 overall, 1-5 Week 6
The Barons had another tough week, although were able to gut out a win against the second place Saints on Wednesday night for their only win of the week.
Alec Gonzalez (Tennessee) came up big in the two games against the Saints, going a combined 7-for-10 with five RBIs, including a 4-hit performance in their win. Darrien McDowell (Pensacola State) launched a two-run shot in that game as well, his third of the season.
Yuji Sakane (East Los Angeles JC) was dominant in relief during the Barons' 7-4 loss to the Riptide, tossing 3.1 no-hit innings, walking two and striking out two.
The Barons will have another full load of games next week, playing the Oaks and Blues twice each, with one against the Foresters and one against the Saints.
-- Lucas Banks
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