Capistrano Valley shortstop Jordan Castro jumps over Riverside Poly base runner Randy Myers while attempting to turn a double play during Tuesday's Division I semifinal game. The Cougars won, 1-0, to earn a spot in Saturday's final.

Capo Valley shows no fear in victory

Capo Valley shows no fear in victory
The Cougars come through with a key hit and a big out to beat Riverside Poly, 1-0, for spot in Division I final.

LONG BEACH - In a game that saw Capistrano Valley left-hander Tyler Matzek zip fastballs that reached the upper 90s on the radar guns, it was a strike thrown by catcher Nolan Clark that sealed the victory.

Capistrano Valley held on for a 1-0 victory over Riverside Poly on Tuesday in a CIF-SS Division I semifinal baseball game at Blair Field.

After Matzek struck out Dylan Barnes for the second out in the seventh inning, Clark fired the ball to first baseman Kevin Chambers, who tagged out Bears runner Austin Haner to end the game. Haner was the potential winning run.

The Cougars (25-6) will face Edison for the title Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Angel Stadium.

"I think the base runner thought there were two outs and wandered off the base too far," Clark said. "I kept my eyes open and nailed him at first."

It wasn't the first base running blunder of the inning for the Bears. Andrew Gomez, who pinch ran for R.J. Ybarra after he doubled to start the inning, was thrown out at third on a ground ball to Chambers for the first out.

In the end, it all led to Matzek, who has been projected as a top-10 pick in next Tuesday's MLB draft, improving to 12-1. Matzek battled his way through the first three innings, but settled down in the fourth.

He retired nine consecutive batters from the fourth to the sixth.

"It wasn't my best game, they were a tough team," Matzek said. "It took me a little while to warm up. In the bullpen (before the start) I wasn't feeling it that well. But I just came out and battled."

Matzek allowed two hits and recorded seven strikeouts. Since he pitched a complete game, Matzek will be available for no more than three innings Saturday.

He hasn't allowed a run in three playoff starts over 17 innings.

"Typical Matzek performance," Capistrano Valley coach Bob Zamora said. "He gets stronger as the ballgame goes along."

Riverside Poly pitcher Dylan Stuart was as equally effective. He also allowed two hits and at one point retired 14 batters in a row.

The first inning, however, proved to be his downfall.

Steve Michael started the game with a walk and stole second. With one out, McMichael scored on a Matzek single. Matzek was 2 for 3.

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