Larks Show Sters No Mercy—SB Falls 8–0
By Jim Buckley
From the bad news/good news department. First, the bad news. The Foresters were shellacked 8-0 by the Hays Larks Thursday night in a game that ended after the top of the seventh inning due to a tournament “mercy” rule. Now, the good news: Santa Barbara is still in it. They play in a semifinal game on Friday evening with another chance to return to the NBC World Series championship game. That game is set to start at 6:30 p.m. Santa Barbara time against the El Dorado Broncos.
The game got away early for Santa Barbara and they couldn’t get it back, as Foresters coaches (pictured) could only watch. Part of the reason was a great starting job by the Larks’ Shawn Lewick. The rest of the reason was an uncharacteristically poor game by most of the Foresters pitchers. Jared Wilson, in his first start for the Foresters, didn’t get out of the first inning. He gave up four hits, walked three, and allowed five runs. The third and fourth runs came with the bases loaded on a catchable fly ball that fell for a double as Richard Sanguinetti apparently lost the ball in the lights.
Willie Kuhl must have left his magic on Tuesday night, because he came in again with the bases loaded and hit the first batter he faced to make the score 5–0. Then in the fourth, Hays added three more runs, helped greatly by eight walks given up by a pair of Sters’ relievers, Kirby Bellow and Andrew Vasquez. In all, Foresters pitchers walked 11 Larks in only six innings.
Hays had the bases loaded on seven different occasions. Santa Barbara’s pitching misadventures included allowing Hays to score on a walk, a hit batter, and a wild pitch. As for the Foresters offense, they managed only three hits, though one was by Austin Davidson, who continues as one of the top hitters in the tournament.
But that game is in the rear-view mirror. The Foresters regroup and face a must-win game on Friday. Tune in on AM 1290 to hear all the exciting action.
Photo by Eric Isaacs