East County Sports

Eagles fall; Highlanders ousted






ECS staff report



GRANITE HILLS —- In a battle which became a late-inning pitchers’ duel, defending CIF Division I champion Westview (circa 2019) held on to nip top-seed Granite Hills, 6-5, in one of two winners bracket semifinals in Friday’s (June 11) San Diego Section championships.

Tied at 5-all through four innings, the Wolverines finally stopped the Eagles over the final three frames. Meanwhile a sixth-inning run on a bases-loaded walk to Darren Cho.

For the Eagles, it was a difficult way to drop such an intense and important ballgame, such saw a combined seven lead changes or ties.

Westview relief pitcher Ryan Herrod lasted 5 2/3 innings after the starter was pulled early. When Herrod’s pitch count reached triple-figures, Luke Ritter entered to register the final out for the save.

Meanwhile, Granite Hills pitcher Austin Smith also pitched 5 2/3 innings, but as the starter, collecting 11 strikeouts.

“We’re just not getting the job done when we have the opportunity,” Smith said.

Granite Hills out-hit the Wolverines, 12-7, but the visitors from Del Sur delivered the power, including back-to-back home runs by Kainoa Williams, Patrick McLellan to open the ballgame.

Granite Hills countered with three runs in its initial at-bat, as the first three batters — Smith (single), Spencer Davis (single), and Grant MacArthur (walk) — reached base.

Ethan McNish-Heider followed with a sacrifice fly for an RBI, Camden Sos intentionally grounded to the right side to even the score, then Tanner Vielguth singled for a 3-2 Eagles lead.

Westview would re-take the lead in the second, but the Eagles moved even in the third on a two-out error.

Both sides scored in the fourth before both pitching staffs shifted into gear.

Westview went up 5-4 on a two-out basehit by Patrick McLellan, scoring Luke Warrington (double). The Eagles countered on a single by MacArthur, bring home Smith (walk, to second on a wild pitch).

For the contest, McLellan batted 3-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored for the Wolverines.

Granite Hills saw MacArthur and Vielguth collected three hits, while Hudson Beamon went 2-for-3.

“Tough loss definitely,” MacArthur said. “We played well as a team and battled hard, but just as (head coach James) Davis said we had them on the ropes and we just couldn’t finish it.

“We need to get better at making the situation bigger than it is. We put ourselves in a bad spot and the only thing we can do is win one game at a time and put this game behind us. Hopefully, we get another chance to play Westview.”

The Eagles move on to Saturday’s elimination game against Bonita Vista at home, starting at 11 a.m.

Madison 7, Helix 0

CLAIREMONT MESA —- The Helix Highlanders, which displayed signs of life late in the season, reverted to their prior selves to close the postseason.

Following a victory in the CIF Division I play-in game, the Scotties were eliminated on consecutive 7-0 counts, including Friday’s (June 11) setback to the Madison Warhawks.

Madison pitcher Victor Arreola fired a six-hit shutout, allowing the Warhawks to avenge a 5-3 loss to Helix on April. 19. Arreola struck out 10 in his complete-game effort.

For Helix (15-16 overall), Wyatt Laub and Ben Haar both batted 2-for-3 as the top three batters in the Highlanders batting card went a composite  5-for-9, but no one was available to drive them home.

The Warhawks scored three times in the second and fifth innings as the bottom two-thirds of the batting order doing the damage. Included was a 3-for-3 outing by the No. 9 batter sophomore Dante Valia.

Madison opened with four straight hits in the second, capped by a two-run double by Minshew, another sophomore.

In the fourth, Valia singled home Simon Griffin (double) An inning later, Lawson Minshew posted a two-run double.

Madison (13-19) moves on to an elimination affair with Point Loma, which was surprised by Poway, 11-5.


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