HomeSportsBears Pound Crescenta Valley, 13-3, in League

Bears Pound Crescenta Valley, 13-3, in League

First published in the April 16 print issue of the Burbank Leader.

Entering the first matchup this season against the Burroughs High baseball team, Crescenta Valley was part of a three-way logjam atop the Pacific League standings with Burbank and Arcadia. The Bears were one game behind the trio, in fourth place, and looking to move up.

Against the Falcons, host Burroughs used a couple of big innings to dispatch Crescenta Valley, 13-3, in a game that ended in six innings due to the 10-run mercy rule Tuesday afternoon.

“We pieced together a great game,” Burroughs coach Matt Magallon said. “We hit well. We pitched well. We played great defense and that typically wins us ballgames. It was a great overall team effort.”

With the win, Burroughs (7-2 league record, 13-9 overall) moves up and now is in a three-way tie for second. Joining the Bears there are Crescenta Valley (14-8, 7-2) and Burbank, which lost to Arcadia 10-0 on Tuesday, leaving Arcadia alone in first place. However, this is the part of the Pacific League schedule where the contenders face each other, so things are bound to change.

“These next couple of weeks is where the rubber meets the road because everyone is playing each other, so we’ll find out what we are made of,” CV coach Phil Torres said.

Burroughs, ranked No. 10 in CIF-Southern Section Division V, blew open a 1-1 game with six runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Bailey Ewan led off with a double off of CV starter Jameson Ferraro, as the first of four Bears to reach base to open the frame. Two batters later, the senior scored on a Falcon fielding error.

Jarell Bijasa followed with a single to drive in two more runs. Five batters later, now with two outs and the bases loaded, Mason Medina smacked a single up the middle to drive in Steven Suarez and Nate Chapman.

This chased Ferraro and brought up Ewan once again. The senior, with runners on first and second base, smashed a double off of reliever Zack Roh to drive in Sebastian Zamora before the inning came to a close when the next Bear was tagged out at the plate.

“We were leaving the bad pitches and swinging at the good ones and we were successful,” Medina said.

The Falcons got one back in the top of the fifth with a sacrifice fly by Noah Shorkey, but the Bears poured it on for four more in the bottom of the inning. The bases were loaded with Bears when Andrew Chapman belted a two-out double into left-center field to clear the bases. Zamora followed and exchanged places with Chapman via an RBI-double down the left field line. The score was 11-2 after five innings.

Crescenta Valley got one back in the sixth. Luke Steel led off with a single off of Burroughs starter Gunnar Nichols and advanced on a wild pitch soon after. Ferraro was the next batter and drove Steel home with a single. Three batters later, Nichols initiated a double play to end the threat.

The game came to an unceremonious end in the bottom of the inning. With two outs, a Falcon reliever issued four straight walks to force home Bijasa, pushing the margin to 10 and ending the contest.

“Any team coached by Phil Torres [is a challenge]. He’s been there 20-something years, and is probably the best in the league, and is someone we respect,” Magallon said. “We just tried to come out and make sure we didn’t make mistakes.”

Nichols pitched all six innings for the hosts to earn the win. The senior struck out seven, including the side in order in the third inning.

“The offense was great today,” Nichols said. “It helped me out. I felt very confident [pitching] out there today, especially with my team playing how they should. It was a good team win.”

The teams exchanged runs in the second inning. In the top of the frame, Crescenta Valley’s Tyler Garland used a sacrifice bunt to drive in Chris Barrena. In the bottom of the inning, Nick Forrest hit an RBI double.

“The mental focus was there today and it showed,” Magallon said.

The teams will play once more this season, with the Falcons hosting.


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