Sierra Vista’s baseball team did just about everything right over the three-day Blazer Spring Bash.
The Mountain Lions pitched well, produced plenty of offense and didn’t make any crucial mistakes in the field.
But on Wednesday night, they ran into their kryptonite: a submarine pitcher.
Sophomore Gabriel Achucarro, using his unconventional delivery, threw a two-hitter with 10 strikeouts to stymie the Sierra Vista offense and lead Chatsworth (California) to a 4-0 win in the Steven Janvrin Championship game of the Blazer Spring Bash at Durango High.
“It was their pitcher,” Sierra Vista coach Joe Moyes said. “We just haven’t seen a lot of submariners like that. We couldn’t adjust as much as we should have. Their pitcher did a great job, kept us off balance. He hit his spots and threw a lot of strikes.”
Achucarro threw four hitless innings before Zachary Kreithe beat out a high chopper to third base for the Mountain Lions’ first hit in the fifth inning. The next batter, Daymien Yohner, walked to give Sierra Vista runners on first and second base with one out, but Achucarro ended his biggest threat of the game with a flyout and strikeout.
Cooper Kitrel had the Mountain Lions’ other hit — an infield single in the seventh.
Chatsworth scored on a bases-loaded balk in the second inning for its first run. Thomas Palomera hit a sacrifice fly in the third, MacKenzie Lomas tripled and scored on a wild pitch in the fourth and Zach Kaminkow, who has committed to UNLV, had a sacrifice fly in the sixth.
Sierra Vista leaned on its pitching to keep the game close. Nicholas Morice allowed just five hits over four innings, and Andrew Carlson threw two hitless innings of relief. Morice struck out three and walked four for the Mountain Lions (10-5).
“Morice is a spot starter because we’re in our fifth game of the tournament. And threw very well and kept them off balance,” Moyes said.
Sierra Vista finished the tournament 4-1, defeating three California schools and Sunset Region contender Cimarron-Memorial.
“I just told them to not drop their chins,” Moyes said. “This is something we can build upon and use as a stepping stone going into some tough league games. I think we’re starting to feel very confident about our game. We’re getting better and better every game. We’re a young team, and I just think the progress we’re making is outstanding. Very proud of these kids.”
Brandon Bohning went 2-for-3 with a double and a triple for Chatsworth.
Birmingham (Calif.) 5, Shadow Ridge 0 — At Centennial, Even good teams get flummoxed when the opposing pitcher is on his game.
Shadow Ridge learned that the hard way Wednesday. The Mustangs dominated three California teams in the Blazer Spring Bash this week, but ran into a buzzsaw from Birmingham (California) and fell 5-0 in the semifinals at Centennial.
“We had a good week playing, so hopefully we can build on that and take it into next week,” Shadow Ridge coach Frank Tousa said. “We’ll see what happens over the next three weeks.”
The Mustangs reached the semifinals by outscoring Elsinore, San Pedro and Verdugo Hills by a combined 37-7 on Monday and Tuesday. With Rancho’s loss earlier in the day, the Mustangs were the last remaining Southern Nevada team in the Centennial Bracket.
Then Eduardo Rosales took the mound for Birmingham. The left-hander was dominant, scattering two hits during his complete-game outing and striking out 10. The Mustangs had four runners and did not get a hit until the fourth inning. They were 0-for-8 with runners on base.
“Tip your hat to him, the kid threw well,” Tousa said. “When we did hit it hard it was right at them, and they made the plays.”
The sun was bright Wednesday, as the teams combined to lose three balls in the sky and let them fall for hits. Unfortunately for the Mustangs, two were theirs, and one of them was the leadoff hitter.
Birmingham’s Johnny Tincher started the game with what looked to be a routine fly to center, but it fell in once the Mustangs couldn’t find it. He scored on a triple by Rosales, and Shadow Ridge could never recover.
Rosales also had a two-run single in the seventh and finished 2-for-4 with three RBIs and a walk.
Senior Jesse Meyer’s single in the fourth and senior Vinny Archer’s sun-aided double in the fifth accounted for the Shadow Ridge hits. The Mustangs also were hit by a pitch twice.
Sierra Vista 6, Cimarron-Memorial 0 — At Durango, Alex Chavira threw 6⅓ shutout innings as the Mountain Lions beat the Spartans in the semifinals of the Steven Janvrin Bracket.
Chavira allowed six hits, struck out two and walked two. He was lifted after a seventh-inning walk put runners at first and second with one out.
Andrew Carlson came on and got Derek Decolati to ground into a game-ending double play.
Cooper Kitrel went 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs to power the Sierra Vista offense. Matt Vanderberg was 2-for-4 with a double, a run and an RBI for the Mountain Lions.
Seth Hoffman went 2-for-3 for Cimarron.
Chatsworth (Calif.) 15, Faith Lutheran 0 — At Durango, Brandon Bohning hit two home runs in the first inning as the Chancellors rolled to the four-inning win in the semifinals of the Steven Janvrin Bracket.
Chatsworth scored 10 runs in the first, and finished with four homers in the game. Tommy Palomera and Randy Mata each added a home run and two RBIs, and Miguel Marin had a single, a double and five RBIs for the Chancellors.
Thomas Gutierrez threw a one-hitter with three strikeouts to get the win.
Cleveland (Calif.) 6, Rancho 3 — At Centennial, Max Younist threw a two-hitter to lead the Cavaliers over the Rams in the Centennial Bracket semifinals.
Younist allowed two earned runs and struck out eight.
Connor Oswalt added two doubles for Cleveland.
Jimmy Gamboa doubled for Rancho.
Palo Verde 16, Verdugo Hills (Calf.) 1 — At Shadow Ridge, Chandler Kochan went 3-for-3 with two doubles and four RBIs to help the Panthers defeat the Dons in a consolation game.
Johnny Condron was 2-for-3 with three runs and two RBIs, and E.J. Arnold went 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI for Palo Verde.
Asher Bouldin added a triple and three RBIs for the Panthers, who scored seven runs in the top of the seventh.
Durango 11, Garfield (Calif.) 6 — At Durango, Josh Barry was 3-for-3 with a double and two RBIs, and the Trailblazers rallied for seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to beat the Bulldogs in a consolation game.
Richard Mascarenas was 3-for-3 with a triple, three runs and two RBIs, and Duke Pahukoa went 3-for-4 with a double, three runs and an RBI for Durango.
Sylmar (Calif.) 10, Durango 5 — At Durango, Eddie Cervacio was 2-for-4 with a double, two runs and an RBI to lead the Spartans over the Trailblazers in a consolation game.
Pahukoa was 3-for-4 with two doubles and a run, and teammate Steven Giatti went 2-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI for Durango.
Las Vegas 11, Rancho Dominguez 1 — At Las Vegas, Brandon Culmo was 2-for-3 with two doubles and an RBI to lead the Wildcats past the Lobos in six innings in a consolation game.
Kevin Verduzco went the distance, allowing an unearned run on six hits, to get the win.
SLAM Academy (Fla.) 9, Las Vegas 5 — At Las Vegas, SLAM rallied for four runs in the top of the sixth to break a 4-4 tie en route to the win.
Martin Simmons was 3-for-4 with an RBI for Las Vegas.
Arbor View 7, Independence (Calif.) 1 — At Cimarron-Memorial, Austin Pfeiffer was 2-for-2 with two runs and four RBIs to lead the Aggies to the win in a consolation game.
Deangelo Smith drove in two runs for Arbor View, which scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth to break a 1-1 tie.
Bellflower (Calif.) 10, Centennial 1 — At Centennial, Brian Murillo and Garrett Gladney each went 3-for-4 with two RBIs to lead the Buccaneers over the Bulldogs in a consolation game.
Anthony Astorga drove in four runs for Bellflower, and Aaron Orozco threw four shutout innings to get the win.