Mater Dei unable to overcome mistakes
LONG BEACH – One extremely bad half of an inning proved to be too much for the Mater Dei baseball team to overcome.
The Monarchs got off to a good start, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning.
However, Newbury Park responded with five in the bottom of the inning.
Pitchers Matt Haskins (five innings) and Luke Eubank (two) made the early lead hold up, leading the Panthers to the 5-3 victory over the second-seeded Monarchs at Blair Field in a CIF-SS Division 1 semifinal Tuesday night.
Mater Dei (24-6) had the go-ahead run at the plate with two outs in the seventh, but Eubank struck out Ryan Barr on a 3-2 pitch to end the game.
Newbury Park (20-7) will face Corona in the final Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Dodger Stadium. Corona defeated West Ranch of Stevenson Ranch, 2-1, in the other semifinal.
In the bottom of the first, Newbury Park took advantage of two Mater Dei errors and three walks to score the five runs on just three hits against starter Davis Tominaga.
"He had trouble locating and we couldn't get him to find that early," Mater Dei coach Burt Call of Tominaga. "We made the errors and the walks cost us."
Tominaga was replaced by Chase Radan with two outs in the first.
Radan got the final out in the first and then proceeded to do his best to keep the Monarchs in the game. At one point, he had retired 11 of the first 13 batters he faced. He allowed just two hits and struck out seven in 41/3 innings of relief.
"He gave us a chance to get back into it," Call said. "Proud of the way he pitched and competed."
Mater Dei scored a run in the third on Barr's RBI triple to make the score 5-3.
In the fifth, Ryan McMahon had a one-out double, but Haskins retired the next two hitters to stop the potential Mater Dei rally.
"Give them (Newbury Park) credit, they did a great job of bouncing back after giving up the two runs in the first inning," Call said. "They capitalized on our mistakes defensively"
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