Donnie Disbro singled home two runs in the fifth inning and Steve Rooten homered in the sixth to give Mission Viejo High School a 3-0 victory over Capistrano Valley Wednesday in a South Coast League opener at Mission Viejo.
The offense supported the five-hit pitching of Troy Kopp (4-1), who survived a fifth-inning scare.
Mike Lavin, who singled to lead off the Capistrano Valley (7-4) fifth, took second when Mission Viejo (8-2) shortstop Eric Ekdahl missed the bag after taking the throw from second baseman Mike Boucher, who fielded John Mackay’s grounder.
After Kopp walked Buster Nietzke to load the bases, he struck out Dave Guillen. Doug Bame then hit a ground ball that was bobbled by Ekdahl, but the Cougars were denied a run when Mackay, who was trying to advance to third from second, was called out for interfering with Ekdahl.
Kopp then retired Ian Levine on a fly ball to left.
“That play hurt us,” said Capistrano Valley Coach Bob Zamora of the interference call. “It definitely had an effect on the outcome of the game. Perhaps if we got a clutch base hit after that play, it would have been forgotten, but as it was, it was the key play of the game.”
Mission Viejo Coach Ron Drake agreed.
“That play took a run and the momentum away from them, and it spurred our pitcher on,” Drake said. “Troy really showed a lot a senior leadership with the bases loaded and no outs to pitch out of the inning without giving up a run.”
Kopp’s Capistrano Valley counterpart, Mike Mosebrook (4-1), who yielded four hits, started the Diablo sixth by hitting Jeff Clark with a pitch. After Ekdahl flied to right, Rick Marian, who ran for Clark, advanced to second on Lance Sabella’s infield out.
After Mosebrook intentionally walked Kopp to face Disbro, Kopp and Marian moved to second and third, respectively, on catcher Bame’s passed ball to set up Disbro’s run-scoring hit.
In other South Coast League games:
Irvine 8, San Clemente 2--David Goldstein (4-1) pitched a four-hitter for host Irvine (6-5, 1-0). Steve Nessl hit a two-run home run in the first inning, and Bobby Garcia was two for three with a double for Irvine.
El Toro 8, Dana Hills 6--Scott Sebbo hit a two-run home run in the seventh to break a 6-6 tie for El Toro (9-3, 1-0) at Dana Hills. Scott Toppo reached on an error with one out and Sebbo followed with the home run. Lance Marks hit a solo home run in the sixth to tie it, 6-6.