By Jim Buckley (photo by Kylie Koeper): On a night when both teams looked in vain for the big hit, it was the Foresters who manufactured enough runs to come out on top. Santa Barbara beat the MLB Academy Barons 4-2 to run their winning streak to 14 games. The teams combined for a grand total of two RBI in a game that saw six runs scored.
Pitching proved to be the Foresters’ ace in the hole, as starter Justin Eckhardt (pictured) was nearly flawless, throwing six innings of two-hit ball while allowing only a single unearned run. Cooper Randall followed and struck out three before Connor Roberts earned his first save of the season.
Down 2-0, the Foresters scored two in the fourth thanks to a wild pitch and a passed ball. Kendall Pettis had the Foresters’ lone RBI in the sixth, but it was a big one. His sacrifice fly to right scored Tanner O’Tremba with what proved to be the winning run.
It was not the prettiest game of the season, but it was another win on the road to Wichita.
After the game, manager Bill Pintard looked forward to Saturday’s contest with the Arroyo Seco Saints. He is is hoping for a big crowd on the final home game of the season. The game is at 6 pm at Pershing Park.
“The Saints are a big rival, and they’ve beaten us three, we’ve beaten them twice, so we need our fans out here to help us win.”
After a final game on Sunday on the road, the team is off to the NBC World Series in Wichita for its all-time record 21st straight season, while seeking to add to it’s record eight national titltes.
“We’re looking forward to Wichita, and we can’t wait to go,” Pintard added. “But we do need our fans’ help. We’ll be washing cars, and mowing lawns, and be on the freeway offramps, looking for money. Well, I’m joking, of course, but we do appreciate anything our fans can do with the Wichita Fund to help us out.”
See you at Pershing on Saturday, or listen to all the action on AM 1290 KZSB. Ster it up!