Romo, Rivera make sure El Dorado stays hot


ANAHEIM — It was El Dorado coach Matt Lucas’ plan this week to get Seve Romo some innings on the mound. The full-time second baseman and part-time reliever had only pitched once this season because of the stellar work by the Golden Hakws' starters and other relievers.

“It’s been hard to find him some innings,” Lucas lamented, but not before noting, “he's too good not to pitch.”

Romo was nearly flawless in relief Thursday and continued what Lucas called “unconscious” hitting to propel El Dorado to a 3-2 Century League victory against Esperanza at Esperanza High.

El Dorado (7-4, 5-1), beating Esperanza for the second time in as many days, has won six of its past seven games and taken a half-game lead on Canyon for first place in the Century League.

Esperanza (3-7, 2-3) had the bases loaded and was down to its final out when El Dorado’s Chris Rivera struck out Nashea Diggs. The Aztecs’ No. 3 hitter had two hits and scored the game’s first run.

“We had the right guy up. He's our best hitter, bar none,” Esperanza coach Mike Curran said. “We get a base hit, we win the ballgame, we get a walk, we tie it up. We’ve played them tough twice in a row, we just came up short.”

El Dorado trailed 2-0 in the fifth inning when Lucas turned to Romo “to keep the game close.” Romo did just that, retiring seven of the eight batters he faced.

Romo made it even closer with a leadoff double in the sixth inning. A two-out single from Bryton Jarvis drove in Romo. Drew Winter came up next and flared a single into shallow right field that drove in two more runs to give El Dorado a 3-2 lead.

The Golden Hawks’ Nos. 6-9 hitters had three hits in the inning, drove in all three runs, and reached safely eight times on the afternoon.

“Anytime one of those guys comes up, I know, because I’ve seen them do it, they can be successful,” Lucas said. “Defense and pitching has carried us and we’ve had some timely hitting.”

El Dorado and Esperanza are both hosting next week's Hard 9 National Classic.

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