By Emma del Sol
In their final meeting of the year the ‘Sters fell short 8-3 against archrival SLO Blues. The ‘Sters have won five of the eight meetings against the Blues. Two late inning runs in the bottom of the ninth inning were not enough to overcome early inning runs given up by starter Kenny Chapman.
The Blues jumped out in front early scoring one run in the first and five runs in the second off starter Kenny Chapman. Chapman was able to strike out three batters in his two innings of work.
Lucas Benenati came into the game in the third inning and pitched six innings of relief; striking out three and giving up only two runs. This outing was Benenati’s longest of the season.
The ‘Sters were hitless until the third inning when Steven Reveles hit a hard chopper over the third baseman’s head for a single.
In the bottom of the fifth inning the ‘Sters were able to score their first run of the game. With no outs, the ‘Sters had runners on second and third. After a stolen base, Dave Graybill was able to score from third as Colt Atwood grounded into a fielder’s choice.
The sixth inning proved to be a powerful one for the ‘Sters defense. Catcher Jeremy Montalbano threw out Taylor Anderson attempting to steal third. Atwood then gunned down Erik Lewis at first after catching a pop fly in center to end the inning. Lewis was being lazy on the bases and didn’t realize the arm of Atwood in center.
The Blues added on a run in the seventh and the ninth innings to give them an 8-1lead.
In the bottom of the ninth the ‘Sters began to rally. After a leadoff double to right center by Jaylin Davis, pinch runner Kyle Kubat stole third, putting a ‘Ster on third with no outs. Granger Studdard then had an infield single scoring Kubat. Studdard then stole second on the first pitch of the at-bat and reached third on a throwing error. Bret Boswell grounded out to first allowing Studdard to score. After that the rally was short lived and the ‘Sters lost the game.
Ford Stainback snapped his thirteen game hitting streak today, giving him the second longest streak of the season.
The ‘Sters are back in action tomorrow at 1pm for their final home game of the season against the Conejo Oaks.