By Sasha Steinberg
Jon Woodcock shines as the Santa Barbara Foresters (20-4, 18-4) rout the Menlo Park Legends (5-13, 4-8) 9-0 in the first of a three game series. The victory marked the 799th career Foresters win for coach Bill Pintard. Woodcock struck out seven, walked three, and only gave up one hit in six full innings. Lucas Benenati and Dalton Brown combined to pitch the final three innings, striking out two batters each while giving up no hits and no walks.
The Foresters scored their first runs in the bottom of the second inning when A. J. Balta blasted a two run home run, his first home run of the season following a triple by Bret Boswell. The ball skied over the right field fence as the Foresters took a 2-0 lead; they never looked back.
Jon Woodock retired the first 9 Legends batters before giving up a bunt single to Trevor DeMerritt in the top of the fourth inning. DeMerritt would go on to steal second and third. Woodcock walked the next batter Logan Trowbridge, and then forced Dylan Cook to pop out to first base. Fortunately the Foresters would keep DeMerritt from scoring as Woodcock picked off Trowbridge and then forced Matt Glob to ground out to shortstop Ford Stainback.
Stainback started the bottom of the sixth off by smashing a ball over the right fielder for a double. Jaylin Davis ensued by hitting an RBI single, scoring Stainback and reaching second base on the throw home. Davis then reached third on a wild pitch, and the next batter Granger Studdard walked, making it first and third for the Foresters. Bret Boswell then attempted a safety squeeze but popped out to the catcher. Following a steal by Studdard, Balta hit an RBI single, his third RBI of the day, scoring Davis and giving the Foresters a 4-0 lead.
Balta advanced to second on a throwing error by the Legends’ second basemen, Kyle Zirbes, and Cody Walker subsequently walked to load the bases for the Foresters. Grant Davis then hit a 2-run RBI single, scoring Studdard and Balta to break the game open 6-0. On a throwing error by the right fielder Cole Loncar, Walker and Davis reached second and third base. Jake Vickerson then reached base due to a throwing error by Dylan Cook. On the same error, Walker scored extending the Foresters lead to 7-0.
In the bottom of the seventh, Graybill scored while executing a double steal, further extending the Foresters lead to 8-0. The Foresters scored their final run off a sacrifice fly by Jaylin Davis, scoring Grant Davis from third.
The nod for EP Beverage Player of the Game goes to Woodcock for his dominant performance on the mound as he improved to 3-0 on the year and now leads the California Coastal League (CCL) in wins (3) and strikeouts (35). The Foresters are simply dominating the CCL as they improve to 18-4 in league play. Having snagged their 20th win overall, they have now won 12 of their last 14 games and look to continue their success while hoping to give Pintard his 800th win tomorrow night against the Legends at 5:05pm.
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