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Calvary Chapel triumphs with late swings
The Calvary Chapel baseball team managed just four hits through the first six innings of Tuesday's Orange Coast League game against Estancia.
In the seventh, Calvary Chapel matched that output and scored three runs, helping the Eagles to a 5-2 road victory over Estancia.
The victory moved Calvary Chapel (9-0, 4-0) into sole possession of first place in league.
"We've been playing pretty consistent baseball," Calvary Chapel coach Tom Nick said. "We play good defense, made the pitches when we needed to and we got the timely hits when we needed to."
With the scored tied at 2-2 entering the seventh, Calvary Chapel's Kyle Mellinger singled with one out and promptly stole second base.
On a 3-1 count, Christian Sheehan's drive to left fell in for a double, allowing Mellinger to score to give Calvary Chapel a 3-2 lead.
"That was a clutch hit," Nick said of Sheehan's hit.
Billy Jackson followed with an RBI double and later scored on Michael Huggins' infield single for the 5-2 lead.
Kohl Webber got the victory in relief for Calvary Chapel, allowing one run on two hits in two innings. Levi Stillman took the loss for Estancia.
Estancia's Brodie Henscheid had trouble in the first inning, throwing 36 pitches, but only allowed one run and went a solid six innings.
"He didn't have his best today," Estancia coach Nate Goellrich said. "But he's been pitching great for us. To have the control issues he had and to only give up two runs in six innings, we'll take that.
"He battled for us. You can't ask for anything else ... when you don't have your best stuff, as long as you battle, that's all we ask for."
Estancia (8-2, 3-1) tied the score at 1-1 in the third inning when Alex Trancoso scored from first on a double by Tyler Rios.
Calvary Chapel took a 2-1 lead in the sixth on Brandon Coon's RBI single. Estancia tied the score in the bottom of the sixth.
The teams will meet again April 3 at Windrow Park, which will be Calvary Chapel's home game, and again April 5, back at Estancia.
Both teams began the week on the outside of the CIF-SS Division 4 rankings.
"As far as I know, this our best start in a long time," Goellrich said. "We've looked and we can't find the history books. Probably in about two decades.
"We always tell them, make the routine play, put the ball in play and compete on the mound. You're going to be successful, more times than not."
In the Orange League:
Savanna 9, Magnolia 0: Nathan Mathias and Chris Prado combined to pitch a two-hit shutout to lead the Rebels (11-0, 4-0) to the home victory.
Mathias (3-0) went five innings. Prado pitched the final two.
In the Pacific Coast League:
Beckman 3, University 1: Garret Brown hit a solo home run in the fifth inning and pitched three innings in relief to get the victory for the host Patriots (8-3, 3-1).
Brown (2-1) had two hits, and Connor Deneen went 3for 3 for Beckman.
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