Michael Kolbach did it all in leading Mater Dei to an 8-3 triumph Wednesday over Tustin in the championship game of the Newport Elks tournament Wednesday at Tustin.
The sophomore left-hander pitched a complete game, giving up five hits while walking two and striking out three. Kolbach (2-0) was just as impressive with the bat, getting four hits--including his first home run of the season in the third, which broke a 3-3 tie and gave Mater Dei the lead for good. He also scored three runs.
"On the summer league teams he plays on he hits pretty well," Mater Dei Coach Bob Ickes said of Kolbach. "We wanted him just to concentrate on his pitching. But we've got a couple of players injured and two more still playing basketball, so we let him hit today."
Kolbach, 16, said he was more excited by the home run than the complete game "because homers don't come too often."
But he was even more grateful the Monarch batters were able to rebound after he made his lone mistake of the game, getting a fastball just where Tillers' first baseman Kevin Timone wanted it. Timone stroked it over the left-field fence for a three-run homer in the bottom of the first.
It was Kolbach who began Mater Dei's recovery in the second with a leadoff double. Two more hits and two of Tustin's three errors got the Monarchs even. Three more runs, sparked by Kolbach's fence-clearing drive to right, put Mater Dei ahead to stay.
Along with the home run and double, Kolbach had two singles.
On the mound, Kolbach settled in nicely, allowing two more singles over the next six innings. Only once during the span, in the fifth, would Tustin get a runner as far as second base.
Tustin right-hander Pepe Vazquez (1-1), who gave up nine hits and six runs (four earned) in three innings, took the loss.