GLENDALE — It was just one of those baseball games where the Crescenta Valley 10-11 All-Star team could do no wrong, and the Foothill-Jewel City/Jewish War Veterans squad couldn't catch a break.
“Our team is from top to bottom capable,” said Crescenta Valley Coach Dean Baker. “All 12, 13 kids can definitely hit the ball. We look for them to put up good numbers all through out.”
And they certainly put up good numbers, as Crescenta Valley defeated Foothill, 24-0, in the opening round of the District 16 tournament at Montrose Park on Friday.
It was all Crescenta Valley from the get-go. The team scored 10 runs in the first inning, putting its first 10 batters on base before recording an out. After scoring five runs in the second and third innings, Crescenta Valley added nine more in the fourth. The game was called after four innings.
Vincent Parrott was one of many Crescenta Valley players who finished with multiple hits. He had two singles, three runs batted in and two runs scored.
“I felt good,” Parrott said. “We played hard in practice and it turned into a win.”
Crescenta Valley also benefited from solid pitching. Three pitchers combined to give up only one walk and nothing more. Starter Hunter Cuneo retired all seven batters he faced, striking out three.
“I knew my defense would back me up if there were any hits,” Cuneo said. “It's easier to pitch because I'm more relaxed than I would be if I didn't have a defense behind me.”
The defense was another bright spot for Crescenta Valley, not logging an error while making some impressive plays.
“That's one of our strongest suits,” Baker said. “We made some really good plays today. Defensively we're a really solid ball club. I put more stock in our defense than in our offense. Today, shutting them down without any hits was pretty indicative of what we can do.”
Cuneo reached base four times (triple, double, single, walk), scored four times and had an RBI.
Foothill Coach Erik Hovland thinks that nerves played a part. He cited solid performances in the second and third innings.
“I think the only lessons I want them to take away is that when they want to play baseball, when they're ready to play baseball, they do pretty well,” Hovland said. “That first inning was really them being so nervous about all-stars and playing at this level. If we can figure out how to settle down before the first inning starts, we'll do much better.”
Hovland was more concerned about his players walking off the field discouraged.
“We talked about the good things,” Hovland said. “With a game like this, it's more important to me that the kid comes back next year and plays baseball.”
Both teams are back in action on Saturday at Pacific Park, with Crescenta Valley playing at 2 p.m. Saturday and Foothill at 4:30 p.m.