Foresters Win Rawlings California Cup!
After earning a berth in the final thanks to offensive firepower that won a tournament tiebreaker, the Santa Barbara Foresters used fantastic pitching to defeat the Santa Paula Halos 5-1 and win the Rawlings Cup Tournament Sunday afternoon.
Starter Justin Camp was nearly flawless, retiring the first 12 Halos in order and then wrapping up five innings of one-hit, one-run ball with five strikeouts. Five Sters relievers then allowed only two hits in four innings while striking out seven more: Dylan Hecht, Elliot Surrey, Tyler Cohen, Dalton Brown, and Troy Cruz. Nothing like a deep and impressive bullpen to bring home the hardware.
Jeremy Montalbano scored three runs, including one on his second homer of the tournament. Bret Boswell came through with a two-run single that put the Sters on top to stay. Montalbano was the Tournament co-MVP with Granger Studdard, who had 8 RBI in the four games. Boswell and Camp joined those two Sters along with David Greer and John Holland on the All-Tournament Team (see below for full list).
After Boswell drove in Montalbano and Lex Kaplan in the second, Santa Barbara added to their lead the next inning with one loud swing of the bat courtesy of Montalbano. The Texas native blasted a 3-1 pitch over the wall in right center for a 3-0 ‘Sters advantage.
Santa Paula got their sole run of the game in the fifth. A leadoff double by Joe Corrigan—the only hit allowed by Camp in five innings—was followed by a stolen base, setting teammate Jeremy Alvarado up for an RBI opportunity. His sac fly made it 3-1.
In the sixth, the ‘Sters tacked on another pair of runs. After three consecutive walks to the middle third of the lineup, John Brontsema knocked a blooper behind second that scored Montalbano. Ryan Chandler then hit a sacrifice fly to center that scored Tyler Neslony from third.
Santa Paula receives the automatic NBC World Series bid given by the Rawlings tournament, since the Foresters are already assured of a bid as defending NBC champs.
Santa Barbara is back in action Tuesday, July 7 when they host the visiting Pacific Union Capitalists for a three game series. First pitch is set for 5:05 p.m. at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. —Cindy Alamillo and Jim Buckley
2015 Rawlings California Cup All-Tournament Team
Co-MVPs: C Jeremy Montalbano, SBF; OF Granger Studdard, SBF
C: Ignacio Diaz, Berc.; Jeremy Montalbano, SBF
1B: Corey Pool, Oaks
2B: Chaneng Varela, Pirates
3B: David Greer, SBF
SS: Andru Cardenas, Halos
OF: Justin Cana, Oaks; Granger Studdard, SBF; Joey Notch, Halos
Util: Bret Boswell, SBF; John Holland, SBF
P: Justin Camp, SBF; Jackson Simonsgaard, Oaks; Brendan Hornung, Pirates; Tucker Pulliam, Berc.; Nate Green, Halos