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Master’s Puts Up Good Defense in Solid 9-3 Defeat of Whittier

The Master’s College baseball team could put even the best fortune teller out of business.

Even Coach John Zeller isn’t sure how the Mustangs do it. They manage to play well for several games, but then the defense suddenly falls apart and the team takes on all the consistency of the weather.

Zeller hopes the season’s four remaining league games will go like Wednesday’s 9-3 nonleague win against Whittier at home.

The Master’s, which committed 11 errors and blew a 7-3 lead in a 16-8 loss against Redlands on Tuesday, committed only two against Whittier in snapping a three-game losing streak. The errors were damaging, but were offset by 12 hits and a strong pitching performance by Kevin Taylor (6-5).

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“We get into streaks where we play bad defensively and it hurts us,” Zeller said. “But our offense is playing well. We’re hitting close to .300 as a team.

“We give our kids 20 minutes of shag practice a day. It’s very important to us and we work very hard at it. That’s what’s so frustrating.”

The Master’s took a 1-0 lead in the first inning, but trailed, 3-1, entering the bottom of the fifth inning. Taylor, who had struck out three of the first eight batters he faced, appeared to lose composure.

Zeller stuck with him, however, and Taylor finished strong. There were no serious Whittier threats after the fifth inning, and Taylor gave up only six hits in the game.

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Taylor got help from catcher Terry Sloan, who was 4 for 4 with two runs batted in.

WHITTIER--Davis, Ashby (6), Jimenez (8) and Lawbaugh.

THE MASTER’S--Taylor and Sloan.

WP--Taylor (6-5); LP--Davis (2-1).

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