PASADENA — A loss to their chief league rival didn’t leave the members of the Flintridge Prep baseball team in a quandary.
In fact, had someone told Flintridge Prep Coach Buzz Cook earlier that his squad would split a pair of games this week with Pasadena Poly, Cook would have taken it without hesitation. At least Flintridge Prep has been competitive with Pasadena Poly, something that hasn’t been the case in recent seasons.
Flintridge Prep played well, but fell short when it suffered a 7-4 Prep League loss to host Pasadena Poly on Thursday afternoon.
“I’ll take the split,” said Cook, whose team scored four runs in the third inning to overcome a 4-0 deficit. “We played pretty well, but they just played better.
“We have nothing to hang our heads about.”
Flintridge Prep (7-3, 3-2 in league) gained some confidence when it picked up an 8-4 victory against Pasadena Poly (6-4-1, 3-1) on Tuesday at the Glendale Sports Complex. It marked the first time that the Rebels had toppled the Panthers since April 18, 2006.
However, Pasadena Poly, winner of 21 of the last 23 Prep League championships, got back to its old self Thursday with some timely hitting.
Flintridge Prep and Pasadena Poly will meet once more at 3:30 p.m. May 12 at the Glendale Sports Complex. The Panthers scored three runs in the bottom of the fourth against Flintridge Prep starting pitcher Royce Park (3-2). Charlie Baxter had a run-scoring double to give Pasadena Poly a 5-4 lead before Matthew Saeta delivered a run-scoring triple to extend the lead to 6-4.
“It’s a tough loss, but at least we still have another shot against them later in the season,” said Flintridge Prep senior third baseman Aaron Fried, who finished with a pair of singles. “We had a chance to win [Thursday], but at least we know that we can beat them.”
Pasadena Poly built a 4-0 lead after two innings. It also held a 3-0 lead in the first inning Tuesday.
Hunter Merryman hit a three-run home run in the first. Baxter made it 4-0 with a run-scoring single in the second before the Rebels rallied to knot the contest.
Flintridge Prep center fielder Nick Ostiller cut the margin in half with a two-run triple. Ostiller then scored on a ground-ruled double to center by Connor McCann, who then came home on a sacrifice fly to right by Park.
“It looked bleak being down 4-0, but then we were able to come back and feel like we were on top of things,” Fried said. “Then they get those three runs, and we came up short.”
Ostiller and Kyle McDonald each collected two hits for the Rebels.
Pasadena Poly received a team-high three hits from Baxter. Saeta, who started the game, picked up the victory to improve to 3-1 on the season.