By Kian Karamdashti
The Foresters bounced back from a disappointing loss Saturday night with a comfortable 4-1 win over the rival Orange County Riptide Sunday afternoon.
On the mound today was Auburn sophomore Brooks Fuller, who flew in less than 24 hours before from the College World Series. Fuller did not even know he was starting before reaching the field as original starter Cole Quintanilla was scratched from tonight’s start due to illness. Fuller mixed his fastballs and offspeed pitches well, getting through three innings with one earned run. The Riptide actually struck first in the top of the second as a line drive single by Michael Peabody brought across Connor Aoki, who had advanced two bases on two separate wild pitches.
Fuller’s highlight came in the top of the third with one out. Two straight hard-hit comebackers were snagged by Fuller, leading to a roaring standing ovation. Fuller tossed the ball in the air and strolled off the field as he ended his outing with an exclamation point.
In the loss to the Oaks on Saturday, Pintard preached the need for the offense taking care of their opportunities with men on base. In the bottom of the fourth, the Foresters did just that. After loading the bases with no outs, a fielders’ choice and two Riptide errors gave the Foresters a 4-1 lead. A lead they would not give up.
Despite the comfortable lead, manager Bill Pintard was still a bit disgruntled on the offensive execution. More specifically, the eighth inning, when the ‘Sters stranded runners on second and third with no outs.
“We put the ball in play and capitalized on a couple errors, which we have to do,” said Pintard. “However, I am not happy with the eight inning. We had runners on second and third with no outs and didn’t get a freaking run. That’s unacceptable. A backwards strikeout, a soft grounder, and another punch out. That’s a golden opportunity and we got to take it. Thank god for the pitching.”
The bullpen was lights out once again. The trio of Kevin Larson, Hunter Breault, and Conner Woods dominated the Riptide lineup. After coming in for Larson, who threw two hitless innings, Breault completely dominated the Riptide in the sixth. Breault not only struck out side, but reached 95 MPH on the radar gun while displaying an effective slider.
“The way we call pitches here is conducive to the way I like to pitch,” said Breault. “Tactics wise. A lot of fastballs, mixing in offspeeds late. It’s a great environment. I love pitching for coach Pintard and in front of this defense.”
Conner Woods would be pick up the three inning scoreless save, striking out three, while walking none.
As the ‘Sters left the field, Jacob Katzfey summed up the feeling in the home dugout pretty well.
“We back baby! We got the juice!”
The Foresters begin a road trip June 25th in Orange County against the Riptide. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30 pm on AM 1290.