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CVC rallies in 7th to beat St. Margaret's
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO – It might not have been as throttling as an 18-0, 19-4 or 6-1 postseason victory, but Capistrano Valley Christian learned rather abruptly that in the playoffs, one-run victories work just as well.
Chasing the lead for the first time this postseason, the Eagles (24-6) scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning for 6-5 victory over St. Margaret's in a Division 6 semifinal at San Juan Sports Park on Tuesday afternoon.
The Eagles will play Desert Christian of Lancaster in the Division 6 championship game 4 p.m. Saturday at UC Riverside.
"It's a double-edged sword," CVC coach Clemente Bonilla said. "I would've preferred an 18-0, 19-4 kind of win, but this kind of win shows the character of our kids. To be down and have the focus to stick to their training was outstanding."
After inheriting a two-run hole in the fifth, Eagles pitcher Sam Eichler retired all five Tartans he faced -- four via strikeout -- to earn the victory.
"We're a different team when Sam is on the mound," Bonilla said. "With Sam out there we feel we can complete with anyone."
CVC's Jacen Carpenter went 2 for 2 with a pair of walks, three stolen bases, three runs and the swing that kept his team's season alive in the seventh. Following a one-out fielder's choice, the Eagles' leadoff hitter stepped to the plate with his team down by a pair and runners on first and third.
After falling behind in the count, 0-2, Carpenter lined a double down the right-field line to pull the visitors within one.
"Whenever we get to two strikes our approach is be ready for a fastball, adjust to anything else and hit the ball where it's pitched," Bonilla said.
With the tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position, Kyle Pickell knocked both in.
Byron Manzo went 1 for 2 with a pair of runs batted in for St. Margaret's (16-9).