The St. Francis varsity baseball team scored a run in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat visiting West Torrance, 6-5, on Tuesday in the semifinals of the CIF Southern Section Division II playoffs and advanced to the championship game.
The Golden Knights, who improved to 24-4, will play Santa Ana Foothill in the title game on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. in Anaheim at Angels Stadium.
Details of the Foothill game, as well as the West Torrance contest, will be made available in next week's edition.
St. Francis came back from a 1-0 deficit to defeat host Yucaipa, 4-2, last Friday in the quarterfinals.
Yuicapa, which came in second in the Citrus Belt League (10-3-1) and finished 22-7-1 overall, scored a run in the bottom of the first inning.
St. Francis tied the contest in the second inning and went ahead, 2-1, in the third. The Golden Knights added two more runs in the seventh on Joe DePinto's two-run home run while the Thunderbirds countered with a single run in the bottom of the frame.
The Golden Knights got 10 hits off Yucaipa's Matt Davidson who had won 10 straight before losing to St. Francis.
DePinto led the offense with two hits, two runs scored and two runs batted in. Also getting two hits were Taylor Smale, Evan Simonitsch and Ramiro Carreon.
Christian Bergman started for the Golden Knights and went the distance to improve to 9-2. In seven innings, Bergman gave up two runs, eight hits, walked none and struck out three.
In second round action on May 24, St. Francis bumped visiting Rialto Carter, 6-1.
Carter, which won the San Andreas League (13-2), finished 18-9 overall.
The Golden Knights scored the first run of the contest in the bottom of the first inning when Smale singled home Simonitsch.
St. Francis got some breathing room in the third inning. Kyle Wong, scored on a Simonitsch groundout. Bergman socked a double to score DePinto and Bergman scored on Andrew Sember's sacrifice fly.
The Lions finally scored a run in the sixth, but the Golden Knights came back with two runs in their half of the frame.
St. Francis pounded out eight hits, including a triple by Wong and doubles by Simonitsch and Bergman.
Luke Collis went the distance for the Golden Knights. In seven innings, he gave up one run, one hit, walked two and struck out three. He upped his record to 7-1.