The Preps : Baseball Roundup : Irvine Rallies to Get Past Mission Viejo

Times Staff Writer

David Goldstein, Irvine High School pitcher, huddled with his teammates outside the dugout before the Vaqueros came to bat in the bottom of the seventh inning Monday in their South Coast League game with Mission Viejo.

Goldstein had watched a 3-2 lead disappear in the top of the inning when he threw a wild pitch that allowed Mission Viejo to tie the score, but the senior right-hander had nothing but encouraging words for his teammates.

“Score a run here and we’ll make headlines tomorrow,” Goldstein said.


Well, Scott Vollmer’s run-scoring double in the inning won’t stop the presses, but it was enough to give Irvine a 4-3 victory, handing Mission Viejo its first league defeat.

Goldstein (5-1) earned a victory and a save, leaving the game in the fifth inning and re-entering in the sixth.

“I don’t do that very often, but I didn’t know what else to do,” Irvine Coach Bob Flint said. “I felt like the whole team was a glass of water. We weren’t very good, we weren’t lousy. We were stuck and going nowhere.

“We needed this one. This is the first time in a long while where I felt, ‘Wow, we played really well,’ and deserved to win.”

Irvine (7-6, 2-1) held a 2-0 lead going into the fifth inning with Goldstein containing a good-hitting Mission Viejo team. Goldstein had six strikeouts after four innings, but Mission Viejo tied the score, 2-2, in the fifth when Goldstein struggled with his control.

Goldstein walked Rick Marian and Eric Ekdahl with one out, and both runners eventually scored off relief pitcher Kevin Obergfell. Left fielder Don Disbro had the big hit of the inning, a run-scoring double down the left-field line.

Irvine regained the lead, 3-2, in the bottom of the fifth when losing pitcher Troy Kopp (4-2) walked Scott Brandino with the bases loaded. Kopp pitched well, but the Diablos committed four errors that led to three unearned runs.

“We made too many errors to win, but I was proud of the way we battled back,” Mission Viejo Coach Ron Drake said. “We had our chances to score, but credit their pitcher. He was tough when he had to be tough.”

Goldstein struck out the side in the fourth inning after Mission Viejo (9-3, 2-1) put a runner on third base with nobody out. He also struck out two in the seventh inning with runners on second and third and one out, finishing with 10 strikeouts.

Then, there was Goldstein’s vision of fame. Obergfell opened the seventh with a single and moved to second when second baseman Mike Boucher couldn’t handle Mike Scale’s hard-hit grounder. Then it was up to Vollmer to line a double down the right-field line, scoring Obergfell with the winning run.

“When the chips are on the line, Scott Vollmer is a tough out,” Drake said. “We walked him intentionally in the fifth, and it ended up costing us a run. I wasn’t going to do that again, and so he hits the double to win the game.”

In other South Coast League games:

Capistrano Valley 9, Dana Hills 0--Starter Mike Mosebrook (5-1) threw a seven-hitter and struck out eight as host Capistrano Valley (9-4, 2-1) used 10 hits, three walks and three errors to win easily. David Guillen led the offense with two doubles and teammate Doug Bame had two hits and drove in two runs.

El Toro 6, San Clemente 3--Shortstop Sean Drinkwater had two hits and teammate Dave Schachter drove in two runs to give starter Greg Pearce (2-0) the victory at San Clemente.