Photo by Vic Neuman
By Patrick Hunter
Pitching? Check. Batting? Check. The Santa Barbara Foresters managed to put together a complete performance on Friday night, taking care of business in a wire-to-wire 12-6 win over the visiting OC Surf. In a non-league game, the ’Sters wasted no time, jumping out to an 11-2 lead by the fourth behind an explosive offense and dominant pitching that struck out 19 OC batters by the end of the game.
The Foresters started their day off in the first inning, as Cameron Warren grounded into a fielder’s choice to score Logan Allen, who had led off with a triple, for the game’s first run. The Surf tied it in the top of the second, but the Foresters would make sure that the tie did not last long.
Tyler Hardman, who has been swinging the bat well as of late, brought in Michael Neustifter with a hard-hit single. Turner Gauntt brought in another run in the next at-bat. To cap off a strong second, Warren knocked in a pair of runs with a single.
After a four-run second inning, the ’Sters blew the crowd away, racking up six in the bottom of the fourth. Ryan Cash got the ball rolling for Santa Barbara, knocking in a run with a base hit. Allen followed with an RBI single of his own. Pinch-hitter Conor Davis and Neustifter hit consecutive doubles to bring in runs, and after those extra base hits, the score read 10-2, Foresters. After a Surf error, the fourth inning ended with a score of 11-2.
The Foresters scored one more run off of an error, and while the Surf made a late run to cut the deficit to six, Foresters pitching was outstanding all day. The 19 Ks were against only four walks. Kamron Fields got his first start and first win, fanning eight through four innings, with reliever Conner Woods contributing five more Ks.
Catch the Foresters in action on Saturday, July 21, where they will take on the Conejo Oaks in a CCL wrapup series the concludes Sunday.