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MATT MASIN , STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Foothill's Cameron Tafoya is tagged out while trying to steal second base during a game against Capistrano Valley at Foothill High on Wednesday.

Roundup: Capo Valley calmly collects another one-run victory

CONTRIBUTING WRITER

SANTA ANA – It has only been three games, but the Capistrano Valley baseball team has established an identity.

The Cougars are a group that thrives in pressure situations.

Capistrano Valley won its third consecutive one-run game by edging No. 9 Foothill, 1-0, in a Newport Elks Tournament game at Foothill High on Wednesday.

“I love tight baseball games,” Capistrano Valley coach Bob Zamora said. “These guys aren’t nervous. They love to play in these type of games. I’m just very much at home with it.”

It was the Cougars’ second straight 1-0 decision in pool play of the tournament’s Frank Lerner Division. They will play at South Coast League rival Tesoro in the semifinals on Thursday.

Capo Valley (3-0) grabbed the lead in the first innnig.

Leadoff hitter Riley Kasper reached on a single and scored on a double by Connor Martin for the 1-0 advantage. Martin finished 3 for 3 with the RBI.

“We spent the rest of the game trying to chase that one run,” Foothill coach Vince Brown said. “It was one of those ones where you feel like you’re going to get that run back.”

Foothill (3-2) was held in check by Cougars starting pitcher Jeremy Taylor, who went 62/3 innings and allowed no runs on three hits with six strikeouts.

Taylor established his fastball and kept the Knights off-balance with an effective change-up. Taylor gave credit to Cougars catcher Kevin Hwang for his ability to shut down a Foothill lineup that had averaged seven runs in its first four contests.

“A great catcher like Kevin, I can definitely rely on his pitch calling,” Taylor said. “I can trust whatever he calls, and I’m going to throw it.”

A well-turned 5-4-3 double play in the seventh ended Foothill’s last threat, and Bryce Willits got the final out for Capo Valley.

Foothill pitchers Carson Herrell and Michael Manzer combined to allow one run on five hits with five strikeouts.

In the Newport Elks Tournament:

Mission Viejo 6, Capistrano Valley Christian 1: Tanner Bibee hit a grand slam and earned the victory for the Diablos (2-0) with a strong effort on the mound (six innings, three hits allowed, six strikeouts).

No. 2 JSerra 4, Damien of La Verne 2: The Lions improved their record to 4-0 as Colin Townsend pitched 41/3 innings.


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