Saints Beat ‘Sters In Extras, 8-7By Arroyo Seco Saints July 06, 2018 01:47am
Article by Christopher D’Avanzo; Photo by Emily Moran
The Arroyo Seco Saints (9-13, 7-11 CCL) needed to play some extra baseball on Thursday night, but made the most of their first extra inning game of the season. The Saints scored a run in the tenth inning of their game against the Santa Barbara Foresters (1st place, 17-3 CCL) winning by a score of 8-7. It was a huge win for a team that has struggled in close games,
The Saints lead 7-6 entering the 8th inning, but a solo home run by Connor Davis off reliever Luke La Flam (Arizona State), set the scene for the possibility of extra innings.
The Saints brought in their closer Joey Steele with the score tied in the 9th. Steele has earned the nickname “Man of Steele”, a play on his last name and a reference to Superman, for his effective pitching in the late innings this season.
“Being able to get a role, and a role where I’m trusted,” said Steele, who recently locked up the 9th inning for the Saints. “I think that’s been the coolest thing [of playing for the Saints] and the thing that’s helped me the most.”
Steele closed the game and earned the win, but the Saints most effective pitcher may have been their starter, redshirt Freshman Charles Peacock (Galveston College). Peacock made a spot start and pitched on short rest, but appeared to be ready from the first pitch. He went three innings, allowing one run but no hits and striking out a pair of Forester batters.
“The pitchers came in a threw strikes, that’s the bottom line,” said Saints head coach Sean Buller. “Charles [Peacock] came in for a spot start situation and was extremely fired up.”
The Saints streak of scoring in the first inning ended on Thursday as Arroyo Seco left a pair of runners in both the 1st and 2nd innings, respectively.
In the 3rd inning, the Saints were able to get to Santa Barbara starter Michael Hobbs. With runners on 1st and 2nd, Bennett McCaskill, the sophomore catcher from Dartmouth, hit a ground rule double for an RBI. John Thomas had to hold at third base but was able to score on the next play, an RBI groundout by New Mexico State first baseman Cooper Williams. With two outs, CSU-San Bernardino second baseman Gabe Chávez hit a ball sharply to the Forester third baseman who was unable to snag it, allowing McCaskill to score for the Saints 3rd run.
The Saints lead 3-0, but the Foresters, as they have done all season, battled back into the game. They scored a run in the 3rd inning and another in the 4th to make the score 3-2, and in the 5th inning scored three more to take a 5-3 lead. Reliever Tim Post (Columbia) gave way to CPP pitcher Michael Gomez, who pitched through the 7th inning allowing only one run.
In the 6th inning, after opening the inning by scoring a run on an error, the Saints tied it up on a single by Cameron Briggs. Briggs moved up on a groundout by Cowley, and came into score on a double by his CPP teammate Brennan McKenzie to give the Saints a 6-5 lead. McKenzie finished the game 2-for-6 with an RBI. Thomas capped the inning with an RBI double of his own, giving the Saints 7-5 lead.
With the game tied at 7 in the 10th, Cowley, who finished the game 3-for-6, grounded to the third baseman, who threw it away, allowing the go-ahead run to score for the Saints. Steele threw a 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the 10th, earning the win for his two scoreless innings.
“I just try to keep it simple,” said Steele. “I’m really excited moving forward [for my game].”
The Saints move on to Healdsburg for a four-game weekend series. Game one is Friday evening at 6 PM.