East County Sports

Santana dominates all facets, claim Division I crown

Photo Courtesy of San Diego CIF


By Adam Paul

CIF San Diego Division I Championship

#1 Santana 8, #2 Patrick Henry 0

SAN DIEGO STATE – In front of a packed house on Friday (May 26), the Santana Sultans came away with the San Diego Section Division I championship over Patrick Henry, 8-0, at Tony Gwynn Stadium.

Santana would take advantage of various opportunities, which included multiple hit batters, multiple bunts, and nine singles.

The Sultans would score the first run of the game in the bottom of the first inning on an error committed by Patrick Henry, allowing Bradley Phillips to come in to score, giving them a 1-0 lead.

Moving to the third inning after a base hit by Alex Giles, Destin Allen-Fox was hit by a pitch followed by a base hit by Jayden Agramont to load the bases. The next batter, Zander Allen-Fox, hit into a fielder’s choice that scored Giles to make it 2-0.

Santana would extend their lead further when Cade Corderman laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt to bring in Allen-Fox. This was followed by Luke Nash lining a single to left field to bring in Agramont to make it 4-0. Now with Zander Allen-Fox at third base and two outs, he would see the perfect opportunity to create some excitement as he took off and would successfully steal home to give the Sultans a 5-0 lead.

The Sultans would tally their final three runs in the fifth inning on multiple base hits and a sacrifice fly.

Staked to an eight-run lead, senior left-hander Destin Allen-Fox showed why he was one of the best pitchers in the county. He would limit the Patriots to five hits, with what was considered the hardest hit ball in the first inning: a two-out double by Jack Giordano. Included in that inning were a hit by pitch and a walk to load the bases, but Allen-Fox would get himself out of the jam with a good old fashioned ground ball out to end the threat and inning.

After the first inning, Allen-Fox would never allow any Patrick Henry runners to get as far as second base and only left one runner on the entire rest of the way.

Garnering the victory with a dominating performance, Allen-Fox won his tenth game of the season, moving his overall record to 10-1, as he allowed no runs on five hits, while striking out three over seven innings. Pitching a shutout allowed him to lower his ERA to a staggering 0.56, while striking out 87 batters in a little over seventy innings.

Santana, who was last in a CIF Championship game in 2017 when they lost the Division II title game to San Marcos by a score of 4-2, had last won a CIF title back in 1994 in the Division III title game under the late legendary coach Jerry Henson when they beat Hilltop 7-1.

Santana coach Rigo Ledezma can now add his name to the list of head coaches at Santana to win a CIF championship, which includes the likes of Tom Flood (1970), Marty Nellis (1984), Jim Saska (1986), and, as mentioned, Jerry Henson (1994).

Patrick Henry falls to 20-12 and sees their three-game winning streak snapped, while Santana has now won four games in a row and moves to 19-10.

Both teams will now move on to the Southern California Regional playoffs with the pairings being announced on Sunday.




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