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KYUSUNG GONG, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Mater Dei's Josh Stephen smacks a single during a Boras Classic game against Huntington Beach at Mater Dei on Thursday.

Mater Dei stays hot in Boras Classic

STAFF WRITER

SANTA ANA – Mater Dei and JSerra play each other three times next week in Trinity League games.

They get a preview of that today.

Mater Dei beat Huntington Beach, 8-4, Thursday in a Boras Classic semifinal at Mater Dei. The Monarchs advanced to the championship game of the Boras’ south bracket and will play JSerra on Friday at 6 p.m. at JSerra.

JSerra beat Alemany of West Hills in the other semifinal Thursday.

The Mater Dei-JSerra winner plays St. Francis of Mountain View on May 2 at noon at Cal State Fullerton in the Boras Classic championship game. St. Francis won the north bracket of the 32-team tournament.

The Monarchs (9-4) have won four in a row, including going 3-0 so far in the Boras.

Huntington Beach (8-7), ranked No. 9 in Orange County, plays Alemany of West Hills in the third-place game at JSerra today at 3 p.m.

Mater Dei’s previous two Boras wins were one-run games. They scored two runs in the first inning and five runs in the third inning to create a 7-1 lead and give little chance that they would be in another one-run game.

Grant Burton and Austin Reyes each had two-run singles in Mater Dei’s five-run third inning.

It was a good game in which to have a big early lead. Mater Dei starting pitcher Brendan Hamilton made his first varsity start Thursday.

“That helped him, getting a couple of early runs,” Mater Dei coach Burt Call said. “He was able to pitch with confidence.”

The Monarchs have been getting hits but, for much of the season, they have been spreading them out.

“The last couple of games we’ve started to hit the ball with runners in scoring position,” Call said. “We’ve been getting some clutch two-out hits, too.”

Reyes had a two-out, run-scoring single in the first inning. Burton’s two-run single in the third inning came with two outs, as did Sam Cachola’s RBI single in the fifth.

Hamilton, a senior right-hander, gave up three hits and two runs in four innings. Ben Kane pitched the final three innings for the Monarchs.

Huntington Beach’s Logan Pouelsen, who signed with UCLA, drove in three runs.

Mater Dei and JSerra play each other three times next week – Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

“We’ll get to know each other pretty well over the next week,” Call said.

Mater Dei won the first Boras Classic in 2013. Elk Grove was last year’s tournament champion.

Contact the writer: sfryer@ocregister.com


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