League play is on horizon

Rain is in the forecast for Friday afternoon, but so is the start of the 2011 Sunset League and Golden West League baseball races.

Edison is the defending Sunset League champion and faces a challenging road test at rival Fountain Valley. In other Sunset openers Friday, Huntington Beach hosts Los Alamitos and Marina travels to face Newport Harbor.

Ocean View starts defense of its Golden West League title at Orange. In other league action Friday, Brethren Christian hosts Crean Lutheran at 3 p.m.



Brethren Christian: The Warriors played a pair of Academy League games over the past week and lost Friday at Oxford Academy (13-5) and Tuesday at Crean Lutheran (2-1). They'll host Crean Lutheran at 3 p.m. Friday.

Edison: The Chargers split a nonleague doubleheader against El Toro Tuesday at UC Irvine, beating the Chargers, 4-3, in the first game but then dropped their first game of the season in the nightcap, 5-1. Junior Timmy Lopes got the win in Game One to up his season record to 3-0.

Edison started out the season 5-0 before losing 1 in the second game. The Chargers on Saturday won the Loara Tournament title by edging Vista Murrieta, 3-2. Senior Henry Owens struck out 16 and was named the player of the title game. Senior first baseman Jonathan Brooks was named to the all-tournament team.

"Up to this point, we're getting results but we need to get better," Edison Coach Steve Lambright said. "I tell the kids, it's one pitch at a time, one out at a time. The scoreboard will take care of itself. We have some work to do."

The Chargers travel Friday (3:15 p.m.) to face rival Fountain Valley. Lambright anticipates a tight league race.

"I think the league is really going to be tough," he said. "There are a lot of good ballclubs in this league and nothing is going to be easy for anybody."

Fountain Valley: The Barons split a nonleague doubleheader Tuesday with visiting Villa Park, losing the first game, 2-1, in 10 innings before coming back to nip the Spartans, 8-7.

In the second game, Nathan Rodriguez hit a two-run home run in the bottom of the third and Danny Jimenez doubled during a three-run rally in the bottom of the seventh that resulted in Fountain Valley pulling out an 8-7 win. Junior Turner Clouse went three for three and drove in three runs and senior Mike Tucker, who came on in relief in the fifth, got his first win (1-0) of the season.

Fountain Valley also completed a 3-2 record last week at the Loara Tournament. Clouse, a left-hander, threw a one-hitter to power Fountain Valley past El Modena, 1-0. In another tournament outing, Jimenez ripped a grand slam and senior Taylor Martin threw four innings of shutout ball to get the win in an 8-2 thumping of Santa Margarita.

Fountain Valley (4-3) begins Sunset League play at home Friday (3:15 p.m.) against Edison.

Huntington Beach: The Oilers "had a good week," Coach Benji Medure said, as they wrapped up play at the Newport Elks Tournament. Huntington scored a 3-2 victory over Santiago/Corona and a 10-1 drubbing of Tesoro. Santiago was ranked ninth and Tesoro seventh in the CIF Division 1 poll when they took on Huntington. The Oilers were edged in each of their three losses, falling to eventual tournament winner JSerra (11-10), Orange Lutheran (3-2) on a walk-off and Esperanza (3-1). JSerra is ranked second and Orange Lutheran ninth in this week's Division 1 poll.

"(They were) great games and we feel good about our team," said Medure, whose squad begins Sunset League play Friday (3:15 p.m.) hosting Los Alamitos. The Oilers play a nonleague doubleheader Saturday against Garden Grove at Golden West College.

Marina: The Vikings went 3-2 at the Loara Tournament in the opening week of the season

In their season opener last week, Jake Tillinghast earned the victory and Mitch Huffman the save as the duo combined to shutout eighth-ranked and host El Dorado, 2-0. The Vikings also beat Diamond Bar, 3-2, on the road in a game where Trevor Megill threw five innings of no-hit ball with 10 strikeouts and Payton Lobdell earned the pitching win. Marina also defeated Woodbridge, 4-3, with Tillinghast getting the victory and Huffman another save and Kevin Isa and Trevor Zeller leading the offense.

In his two starts, Tillinghast has pitched 11 innings and hasn't given up a record in two wins. Isa, Jake Arledge and Keegan Reeser have led the Marina offense.

Marina launches Sunset League play at 3:15 p.m. Friday at Newport Harbor. On Saturday, the Vikings host a nonleague doubleheader with Esperanza. First pitch in Game One is 10 a.m. with the second game scheduled for a 1 p.m. start.

Ocean View: The Seahawks took on El Dorado on Monday in what has become an annual nonleague doubleheader between two traditionally strong programs and on this occasion, it was the Hawks who won both games, 2-0 and 9-1.

In the first game, Ocean View starting pitcher Alex Knowles threw what Coach Shane Borowski called "a gem" by allowing only one earned run and striking out three without allowing a walk. The Seahawks, however, were no-hit through six innings. Sophomore Luke Fell broke up the no-hitter with a line drive single to right-center field in the seventh and Robert Fogarty got the second hit of the game for Ocean View, a double to deep centerfield off El Dorado's highly-touted reliever, Christian Rivera, who Borowski noted is one of the top sophomore prospects in the nation, according to Scouting News.

Travis Sparks-Jackson was to start the second game for Ocean View but was "scratched due to arm soreness," Borowski said. Sophomore Luke Fell got the nod and "started off shaky, allowing six runs in the first two innings. Fell rallied to pitch two innings of shutout ball after that. He was relieved by senior Trey Gourdine who pitched a perfect fifth inning but surrendered two runs in the sixth and gave way to junior Colton Johnson who entered with bases loaded. Johnson did give up a walk but then got out of the inning.

Johnson did provide Ocean View's only run in a 9-1 loss, his run-scoring single bringing home Gourdine who had doubled to right-center field.

The Seahawks completed play Saturday at the Newport Elks Tournament where they lost, 5-3, to La Habra in the consolation championship round. Blake Walker pitched four strong innings and exited with a no-decision. Johnson suffered his first loss of the year in two relief innings. He gave up a solo home run in the fifth to the Highlanders' Jeff Bell that tied the score (3-3). Fogarty continued his clutch hitting picking up two runs batted in, the first on a two-out single in the first inning and then a sacrifice fly in the fourth that put Ocean View in front, 2-0. Timmy Robinson went two for three and Freddy Sepulveda had a hit and RBI.

Ocean View batters struck out nine times in the second game against El Dorado, and seven times against La Habra.

"We have been very inconsistent this year," Borowski said. "We have a lot to prove and we are not quite getting the job done. Right now we have a lot of individual efforts but not enough team effort as a whole. We need to get our focus back to winning as a team, not performing as an individuals. Granted, we faced some great pitching the last few games but if we want to win, we need to learn how to battle and fight our way through those tough pitchers.

"We are not 100% healthy right now, but that is not the reason for the slump. We need to learn how to battle, both on offense and defense. Once we get that to be our focus, I feel we will be a good team."

Ocean View starts Golden West League play Friday (3:15 p.m.) at Orange.



Brethren Christian: The Warriors took on Saddleback Valley Christian Tuesday and dropped a 10-0 nonleague game to the Warriors.

Edison: Samantha Cordova struck out nine, Carissa Sherman drove in a run on a triple and Alley Perkins had a key sacrifice during a three-run fifth inning and the Chargers on Tuesday slipped past Rosary, 4-2, at the Laguna Hills Tournament at Alicia Park in Mission Viejo.

Edison began the tournament Monday with a 16-0 shellacking of Capistrano Valley as senior Allyson Hecht threw a no-hitter and struck out 13 in a game called after five innings.

Fountain Valley: The Barons traveled to Bullhead City, Ariz., where they went 3-2 overall at the Tournament of Champions to earn a seventh-place finish. Coach Rick Aldridge said his squad beat teams that were ranked locally and by ESPN Rise and CAL HI Sports. Fountain Valley, which is 5-4 overall, hosts Beckman on Monday and Segerstrom on Wednesday in a pair of 4:15 p.m. nonleague games.

Huntington Beach: The Oilers split their first two games at the Laguna Hills Tournament, beating Dana Hills, 9-6 Monday, and losing, 8-0 Tuesday to Tustin. In the win over Dana Hills, Freshman Kaitlyn Lanksbury and senior Vicky Galasso both hit two-run home runs and sophomore Emily Stoner got the win in relief of starter Micaela Vierra.

The tournament concludes today at Alicia Park.

In previous action, Huntington finished runner-up to the Costa Mesa Tournament title after falling, 5-2, to Cerritos in the championship final Saturday. Galasso and Stoner both were named to the all-tournament team. The Oilers, who went 4-1 at the tournament, were led offensively by Galasso who hit four home runs and freshman Ally Forsberg had two home runs. Stoner and sophomore Jillian Martinez each had a hit.

Marina: The Vikings on Tuesday scored three runs in the top-half of the first inning against Aliso Niguel and went on to post a 10-3 win over the Wolverines in action at the Laguna Hills Tournament at Alicia Park. Senior Jamie Sullivan homered and freshman Desiree Hagberg doubled during a six-run third inning and freshman Tera Blanco recorded a complete-game victory. Marina was edged, 7-6, by Mission Viejo in a first-round tournament game Monday.

The tournament ends today at Alicia Park.

Ocean View: The Seahawks, the top-ranked team in CIF Division 4, suffered their first loss of the season Tuesday when host Laguna Hills scored the final six runs of the ballgame to emerge with a 6-2 victory at the Laguna Hills Tournament at Alicia Park.

Ocean View started the season 4-0, getting victory No. 4 Monday with a 7-1 decision over San Juan Hills in a first-round tournament game. Brittany Hitchcock pitched a complete game with 11 strikeouts and Kristin Nance had three hits.

In previous action, Sarah Craig hit a three-run home run and Hitchcock pitching a one-hit shutout as Ocean View pummeled Tustin, 10-0. March 8. Two days later, Celine Fuentes pitched a complete game and notched her second win of the season and Hitchcock had three hits and two RBI in a 7-1 win over Western.

The Seahawks complete tournament play today. On Saturday, they'll take on Gahr at 4 p.m. at the Timberwolf Classic at Bill Barber Park in Irvine.

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