Right-hander Josh Belovsky baffled Chaffey College, pitching a two-hit shutout to lead Cypress to a 4-0 victory in the first round of the Southern California State Regional Tournament Friday at Cypress College.
Belovsky (10-1) kept hitters off balance with a variety of pitches, striking out eight and walking two. The victory, a school-record 37th for the Chargers, put them into the tournament winners’ bracket.
Cypress (37-10) will play Southwestern at 11 a.m. today at home. Chaffey (35-9) will play Cuesta at 10 a.m. at Fullerton College.
"(Belovsky) did an outstanding job,” Charger Coach Scott Pickler said. “He was the difference today.”
Belovsky, a sophomore from Orange High, survived a shaky start. He hit leadoff batter Ron Reyes and gave up a single to David Munoz. But he retired the next 14 batters before walking Mario Najera in the fifth inning. Cypress had a 3-0 lead by then.
“I was a little nervous (at the start) and was squeezing the ball,” Belovsky said. “But I got settled down and knew I’d be all right. I was feeling good because it was a big game.”
Chaffey starter Chad Albaugh (11-2) made several mistakes in the Chargers’ three-run fourth inning. After Jason Hodges’ leadoff single, Albaugh made an errant pickoff throw to first, balked and hit Andy Gonzales with a pitch to put runners on first and third. Dave Trentine singled to center, driving in the first run.
Gonzales scored on Eric Stevens’ force at second, when Chaffey shortstop Mario Najera threw into the dirt at first base, attempting to complete a double play. After a another hit batsman, Gonzales scored from third on a wild pitch.
Cypress added a run in the seventh when pinch-runner Mario Opipari reached third on an errant pickoff attempt at second and scored on Israel Gonzalez’s fly ball to right.