Senior catcher Matt Hall
has been the driving force for the undefeated La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad)
baseball team in the early going of the CIF-SDS season.
Hall is batting .571 (12-for-21) with six extra-base hits, including two home runs and 10 RBIs. Hall was 10-for-11 in the last three games of the Mavericks' six-game sweep en route to the Falcon-Pirate Classic championship.
The 5-foot-11, 190-pound Hall was 3-for-4 with five RBIs as LCC clipped Torrey Pines 10-4 in the tournament title bout. It was the third time in four years that La Costa Canyon (6-0) has captured the Falcon-Pirate flag.
Until the fifth inning, it appeared that the Falcons (5-1) might have found the key to winning the tournament at the expense of the Mavericks, stroking six of their seven hits in the first five innings.
Holding a 4-2 lead, behind a two-run single in the top of the fifth by Morgan Oliver
, the Falcons allowed the Mavs to rally a second time. Thanks to four hits in the fifth, LCC forged in front 5-4.
Instead of walking Hall with runners at second and third base, Torrey Pines chose to pitch to him, and the Cornell-bound senior singled in the final two runs of the inning for the lead.
"Their coach likes to come right at me, so I figured he would at that point instead of walking me," Hall told the North County Times. "Their guy was throwing me off-speed (pitches), but he gave me a fastball I got into.''
To help finish off the Falcons, Hall singled in his fifth run of the game during a five-run sixth inning.
"We've had the pitching, but so far this year we've been coming alive with the bats," Mavericks coach Justin Machado said. "Matty is hot. He came up three times and came through. He was the big guy in this one."EL CAPITAN, GRANITE HILLS PLAY AT RECORD PACE
Former Padres National League Cy Young award winner Randy Jones was recognized for pitching the shortest games in Major League Baseball during his 10-year career (1973-82). Basically he never shook off his catcher. He got his sign and made his pitch. An average Jones game probably lasted 90 minutes for nine innings. El Capitan (Lakeside)
junior pitcher Kevin Ginkel
never saw Randy Jones pitch, but he has inherited some of the former big leaguer's habits in that he works fast and economically.
In Saturday's championship game of the Hilltop-Lolita's Tournament, Ginkel needed only 57 pitches to hurl the top-ranked Vaqueros to a 3-1 victory over Granite Hills at Hilltop.
It took him only 65 minutes to finish the job. In fact, the first four innings in Ginkel's pitching duel against Granite Hills' Doug Brannvall
took only 28 minutes – that's seven minutes per inning, including between-inning warm-ups.
"That might be the best pitching performance I've ever had by one of my pitchers," said El Capitan coach Steve Vickery, who has been coaching high school varsity baseball for 32 years. "Oh sure, I've had guys strike out a bunch of batters in a game, pitch one-hit shutouts, two-hit shutouts … but as far as neat and tidy, this guy Ginkel is right there at the top of the list."
Ginkel had a perfect game going for the first four innings but his most impressive statistic was that he threw 48 strikes and only nine balls.
"I've always had good control and focused on location," said Ginkel. "I was pounding the zone and did a pretty good job of moving my fastball inside and out."
Ginkel walked none, hit one batter and struck out four.
El Capitan (5-1) made Ginkel the winner as Tyrone Wiggins
whacked a solo home run and Stanford-bound Troy Conyers
clubbed a two-run shot, all in the bottom of the sixth, giving the Vaqueros the win. SURPRISING HELIX MAKING BID FOR CIF-SDS BASEBALL TOP RANKING
Are the Helix (La Mesa)
Highlanders worthy of a No. 1 ranking in the San Diego CIF?
"That's not for me to decide," Highlanders coach Cole Holland said. "We just go out and play the next team on our schedule."
La Costa Canyon and Parker (San Diego)
are also 6-0 and won tournament championships over the weekend and may stake a claim to the section's top spot.
In Saturday's championship game of the Aztec-Foothiller Classic, Helix rode the stout pitching of Mauro Olivarria
and Jake Reed
to shut down host Grossmont 5-1.
A senior right-hander who was shelled by the Foothillers in last year's CIF-SDS Division II championship game at Tony Gwynn Stadium, Olivarria was in command this time around. Having surrendered seven straight hits in the first inning of an 8-0 loss to the Foothillers a year ago, the 5-foot-10 righthander spun a six-hitter and struck out seven as he rolled his season record to 2-0, which includes a 1.27 ERA.
"My control wasn't there all day but it was there when I needed it," said Olivarria. "I never threw the same pitch twice but if I did, it wasn't in the same location and that kept them off balance. I don't throw that hard so I have to fool ‘em. I'm not going to throw the ball by too many batters."SANTA FE CHRISTIAN'S GANNON BLAZES LIKE A CANNON
Santa Fe Christian junior pitcher Nolan Gannon
fired a no-hitter and struck out 15 in the Eagles' 4-0 victory over visiting Mt. Carmel in the Pirate-Falcon Classic. "The last batter struck out swinging, and I heard people shouting, but it just didn't really sink in," Gannon told the North County Times. "I was just in shock. My team came charging to the mound to congratulate me, and I just gave thanks to the Lord."FRANCIS PARKER'S DOWDY IS NO DOUBTER
of Francis Parker went 2-for-3, driving in five runs with a grand slam and a single as the Lancers (6-0) knocked off Mission Hills 9-5 in the Andy Sanchez-Bully's East Tournament finale.OTHER TOP PERFORMANCES
* Oregon-bound pitcher Jake Reed
of Helix has two wins, a pair of saves and has not allowed a run in 13 innings while logging 20 strikeouts.
* Trailing by one run in the bottom of the seventh, Julie Pena's
two-run homer lifted Westview to a 6-5 victory over Escondido in a battle of top 10 softball teams.
* Grossmont centerfielder Will Soto
was 3-for-4 and robbed Helix's Rashad Harlin of a second home run with a one-handed catch behind the fence that he turned into a double play.
* Senior outfielder Nico Garbella
of Cathedral Catholic was 2-for-4 with a home run, a double, two runs and a pair of RBIs against St. Augustine.
* Helix junior outfielder Rashad Harlin
, who is drawing attention from professional scouts, was 3-for-4 with a home run against Grossmont.DICKENS' DEALINGS
Certain players always seem to attract a parade of scouts every time they play. Pitchers, of course, are the main magnets. No question that adds to the stress these 17- and 18-year-olds endure. Yet, showing the ability to perform under pressure can only help balloon the bonus a player will get if he is selected in the June amateur free-agent draft.
Those queried on the subject of staring at a bevy of radar guns behind the backstop on a given day, insist that they do not see the scouts aiming their way. That's hard to believe.