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PAUL RODRIGUEZ, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Orange Lutheran catcher Aaron Kim, left, tags out Santa Margarita's Ryne Russo at home in the second .

Roundup: Orange Lutheran victory settles matters

STAFF WRITER

The Trinity League baseball playoff scenarios were plentiful and confusing.

Orange Lutheran made it simple Thursday, the final day of the regular season, by beating Santa Margarita, 5-1, at Santa Margarita.

The win put the Lancers in second place in the final league standings with a 9-6 league record. The loss eliminated Santa Margarita from the playoffs.

Brendan Avvertino drove in three Lancers runs. Tristan Hanoian and Zachary Lew drove in the other two. Luke Mattson pitched five innings to get the win and improve to 5-1.

With Santa Margarita’s loss, Mater Dei secured the league’s third and final playoff berth before it played St. John Bosco on Thursday night. The order of Trinity League representation in the CIF-Southern Section Division 1 playoffs: 1. JSerra, 2. Orange Lutheran, 3. Mater Dei. That is the same order as last season.

Like last season, Santa Margarita finished fourth, one game out of third place. There will be no at-large berths in the Division 1 playoffs, so Santa Margarita, which finished 20-10 overall, is done.

CIF-SS baseball playoff brackets will be released Monday.

League champion JSerra will get a first-round home game in the Division 1 playoffs. As a No. 2 team, Orange Lutheran could open with an away game or with a home game. Last year, Orange Lutheran got a first-round home game and being the No. 4 team in this week’s Division 1 top 10 likely will get a first-round home game this year.

JSerra, No. 1 in the Division 1 top 10, probably will be seeded No. 1 in the division as it was last season.

Mater Dei played in the Division 1 wild-card round last year. Nine of Division 1’s 12 No. 3 teams in last year’s playoffs played in the wild-card round.

Mattson was happy and relieved about the No. 2 finish.

“I’m glad to come in second,” Mattson said, “especially because how tough this league is.”

Santa Margarita took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when leadoff batter Johnny Carr singled, advanced to second base on a wild pitch, took third on Joe Welch’s sacrifice bunt and scored on Derek Park’s sacrifice fly.

In the third, Avvertino’s two-run single scored Aaron Kim, and Garrett Mitchell for a 2-1 Lancers lead.

They added a run in the fifth, when Avvertino singled home Kim again. In the sixth, Hanoian drove in one run with a single and Zachary Lew’s sacrifice fly provided the Lancers’ fifth run.

Orange Lutheran’s hopes for a league championship were quashed when the Lancers were swept by JSerra in a three-game series in the final week of April. They won two of three against Mater Dei the following week and, after losing to Santa Margarita on Monday, beat the Eagles on Tuesday and Thursday to finish strong and take the No. 2 playoff berth.

“Our backs were against the wall,” Orange Lutheran coach Eric Borba said. “Our guys answered back these last two games. That’s what Orange Lutheran baseball is all about.”

Also in the Trinity League:

Mater Dei 1, St. John Bosco 0: Jonathan Schiffer pitched a two-hitter with seven strikeouts for the Monarchs (16-12, 9-6).

In the Crestview League:

Esperanza 2, Canyon 1: Blake Schriever pitched a complete game for the league-champion Aztecs (19-9)

In the Empire League:

Cypress 12, Kennedy 0: The Centurions (23-7, 10-0) completed the regular season as sole champions of the league.

In the North Hills League:

No. 9 Foothill 5, Yorba Linda 1: Cal State Fullerton-signee Dillon Brown homered and pitched a complete game for the league-champion Knights (22-7, 9-3).

In the South Coast League:

No. 5 Aliso Niguel 11, Capistrano Valley 1: Blake Sabol, who signed with USC, went 4 for 4 including a home run for the Wolverines (21-9, 7-5), who finished second in league behind El Toro.

In the Sunset League:

Newport Harbor 17, Edison 8: The Sailors (13-14, 7-8) had 16 hits in their victory. Edison already had clinched a playoff berth. The Sunset League playoff representation in the Division 1 playoffs: 1. Marina, 2. Huntington Beach, 3. Edison.

Contact the writer: sfryer@ocregister.com


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