Spooner, El Toro escape with win over Capo Valley


MISSION VIEJO - El Toro went on the road to earn its first South Coast League victory of the season, beating the two-time defending league champion Capistrano Valley, 2-1, on Tuesday.

Bradley Spooner went the distance for the fifth-ranked Chargers, giving up the lone run while striking out five and surrendering five hits.

“I’m just trying pitch to my full to potential,” Spooner said. “I know how good I can pitch, I just have to come out and pitch like that and shut down teams.”

El Toro scored both of its runs in the first inning. Kenny Oyama led off the game with a single, but was out at second on a fielder’s choice that allowed Nathan Church to reach base. Church went to third on a double by Josh Zamora and they were both scored on a single by Gavin Garcia.

In the bottom of the first, Spooner gave up a leadoff single, but settled in from there, retiring the next nine Cougars.

Spooner’s ability to throw first pitch strikes, which he did to 21 of 26 Cougars, allowed him to keep Capistrano Valley off balance and – for the most part – off the base paths.

Spooner ran into some trouble in the sixth. Riley Kasper got a one-out hit and Spooner hit Connor Martin to put two on. Kevin Hwang then singled to right, but Kasper was thrown out trying to come around to score from second. Another hit batsmen by Spooner loaded the bases.

Malone Wright lifted a single over the head of the second baseman, scoring Martin. Wright’s single was not deep enough to score Hwang, who was gunned down at home. Spooner then got Josh Solomon to fly out to right to end the inning.

El Toro will be on the road for a doubleheader against sixth-ranked Cypress on Wednesday.

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