After giving up 11 runs and yet still finding a way to beat Crystal Springs Uplands in the Bay Counties League West championship game Saturday, conventional thinking would be that the Lick-Wilmerding baseball team would be quite satisfied with surrendering just one run in its North Coast Section Class A quarterfinal playoff game.
That conventional thinking would be wrong.
Daniel Alcaire pitched a shutout, allowing just two hits while striking out six to lead fourth-seeded Salesian of Richmond to a 1-0 victory over fifth-seeded Lick-Wilmerding. The Tigers finished their season at 18-7. Salesian advances to face top-seeded St. Vincent of Petaluma (19-4) in Friday’s semifinals.
Lick starting pitcher Caleb Kauffman matched Alcaire pitch for pitch, giving up just one run on four hits over six innings, but it wasn’t quite enough to get past the Pride (17-8).
“I thought I had good control, and I was able to get some strikes with my curve, which was something I had been struggling a little with lately,” said Kauffman, a senior. “It’s tough. You almost wish it was a blowout instead of a one-run game because it hurts a little more, especially knowing I’m done playing high school baseball.”
The game’s only run came in the bottom of the fourth inning, with the rally starting when Alcaire reached first with a one-out single. Brian Apodaca came up next and roped an opposite-field double that scored courtesy runner Justin Brown all the way from first to give Salesian a 1-0 lead.
Alcaire, who will play for St. Mary’s College next year, kept the Tigers at bay by employing a fastball that consistently found the outside corner and a curveball that showed plenty of late-breaking movement.
Despite Alcaire’s solid stuff, the Tigers had a golden opportunity to tie up the game in the top of the sixth. Louis Derosa started the inning by getting hit by a pitch, then stole second and moved to third on Anthony Gilmore’s grounder to shortstop. Kauffman followed with a walk on four pitches to put runners on the corners with one out.
Attempting to bait a throw to away from home by the Salesian catcher, Kauffman tried to steal second and appeared to beat David Castillo’s toss, but he was called out when he was tagged after sliding past the base. Despite the throw going to second, Derosa was unable to score from third and Alcaire then induced Wes Goodman-Levy into a slow roller to first, ending the Tigers’ lone scoring threat of the game.
“We had a great season,” Lick coach Manny Granillo said. “We played as well as we could have today, but baseball is a game of inches and we just came up a little short in this game.”
Salesian 1, Lick-Wilmerding 0
International 9, CSD 5
FREMONT — Will Moritz went 2-for-4 with four RBIs as the seventh-seeded Jaguars (12-5) knocked off No. 10 California School for the Deaf (15-9) in the first round of the NCS Class B playoffs. International advances to play at No. 2 Tomales (21-3) in the quarterfinals Saturday at 4 p.m.
Moritz had a two-run single in the bottom of the first to help the Jaguars take a 4-1 lead and then provided some insurance in the bottom of the sixth with another two-run single. Charlie Boatwright pitched into the sixth inning for International to earn the win, while Harry DiFrancesco came on for the save.
In other Class B action, both third-seeded Leadership and fourth-seeded Stuart Hall will be back on the field for the quarterfinals after earning byes in the first round. The Griffin (15-6) will play at No. 11 Potter Valley (14-8) Saturday at 4 p.m., while the Knights (16-9-1) will host No. 5 College Prep of Oakland (17-8) Friday at 4 p.m. at USF’s Benedetti Diamond.
— Staff report
International 9, California School for the Deaf 5
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