East County Sports

Matador one-hitter beats busy Vaqueros

2021 EAST COUNTY PREP BASEBALL

 

ECS staff report

Mount Miguel 5, El Capitan 4

SPRING VALLEY —- A long, long week for the El Capitan Vaqueros finally saw light at the end of the tunnel, but when your ballclub isn’t playing well, of course, that light might actually be a freight train.

The Vaqueros were just one out away from a nice road victory over Mount Miguel, but they never reached the 21st out, as the Matadors took advantage of several walks and a pair of game-deciding errors to gain a 5-4 walk-off triumph in Grossmont Valley League action on Thursday (May 21).

One-out singles by Jeremiah Castillo and David Keller brought the potential game-winning run to the plate in the seventh, but a fielder’s choice to El Cap third baseman Bradley Larsen erased the lead runner was good for the second out.

However, Mount Miguel’s bats never registered another out as the young Vaqueros continued to show growing pains.

An error accounted for a run by Keller, then a pair of walks forced home the game-tying run, as Johnathan Trader collected the easy RBI.

Mount Miguel makes a running catch on Friday. / MMHS Baseball

Matadors batter Ruben Gomez smacked a soft liner which should’ve forced the contest into extra innings. But when the ball was dropped, Miles Emerick, who was just inserted as a pinch-runner in his first varsity appearance of the season, came home to leave Mount Miguel bouncing.

“It was nerve-racking but I kept composure, dug in the back of the box, and waited for a fastball to drive to the opposite field to score the runner on third,” Gomez said of the final at-bat. “Running down the first base line knowing I just won the game for my squad was honestly one of the most rewarding feelings anyone can experience.”

Early on, the Matadors scored twice in the first, but El Cap fought back.

Cole Winsor belted a solo homer in the third — the lone hit on the day by El Cap — then scored three times in the fifth to grab a 4-2 advantage. Both sides took advantage of errors to score unearned runs, capped by El Cap’s Bergherm lifting a sacrifice fly for a 2-run lead.

For Mount Miguel (8-15 overall, 3-5 GVL), Matt Acevedo and Jeremiah Castillo posted two hits each among just five for the entire tea.

Pitchers Eddie Delgado (4 IP) and Thomas Ringer (3 IP) combined on the one-hitter.

“I pitched pretty well today,” Delgado said. “Most of my pitches were cutter and I was throwing my curveball, too. I was throwing outside pitches.”

Deldago struck out four batters, while Ringer nailed four of his nine outs on strikes to garner the victory in relief.

“I threw three pitches effectively,” Ringer said. “It’s nice that we have an opportunity for success.

El Capitan (6-15, 2-5 GVL) fell for the sixth time in its last seven starts.

Thursday

Bonita Vista 15, El Capitan 10

LAKESIDE —- Except for the CIF Division V level, a “double-double” — a contest when both ballclubs score in double figures — is fairly rare. But when a non-league ballgame is held in the middle of the league calendar, teams tend not to utilize their top pitching to save for the games that really count.

Such was the case on Thursday (May 20), as the El Capitan Vaqueros participated in their first “double-double” outing in more than a decade, falling to the Bonita Vista Barons, 15-10, at Hostetler Field.

Often, it’s younger, inexperienced pitching which gains an opportunity to grow in these types of varsity games. However, the arms were not reasonable on this occasion, as the double-double occurred due to less-than-desirable defenses.

The Vaqueros and Barons combined for 10 errors, leading to 10 unearned runs, including eight against El Cap.

The double-double is the first for the Vaqueros since a wild 12-10 decision over Steele Canyon more than 11 years ago in a Grossmont Conference Tournament game held on Mar. 24, 2010.

Despite losing to Bonita Vista, it was the second-most productive game of the season for the Vaqs offense, despite collecting just one extra-base hit.

At the top of the batting card, leadoff hitter Connor Crist went 4-for-5, scoring each time he reached base in his best batting performance of the season.

No. 3 hitting Jake Bergherm drove in three runs. In the batting order, Bergherm was surrounded by Cole Winsor and Bradley Larsen, who knocked in two runs each.

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