Sclazo’s Homer Seals Series; No. 23 Kingsmen Take Two of Three From No. 21 CMS

Photo credit: Mariah Zermeno
Photo credit: Mariah Zermeno

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — With a split through the first two games, Joseph Scalzo hit a two-run bomb in the ninth of game three to seal the win and the series for No. 23 Cal Lutheran Baseball against No. 21 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps on Saturday.  

The Stags took the first game with a score of 12-6. The Kingsmen fired back and won game three 8-5.  The Kingsmen broke a tie with CMS and La Verne at the top of the SCIAC. They are now 7-2 in conference and 12-4 overall.

In the decisive third game, John Frazier started on the mound. He pitched five innings and faced 26 batters. He allowed seven hits and two runs, with two strikeouts. Frazier improved to 3-1 on the year. 

The Kingsmen opened the third game on a mission. In the second inning, they scored six runs and took a big lead. Kyle Reuser hit a 2-run homer to center field to start the scoring for his squad. Josh Quinn, Zach Lafata, Sean Blandino and Max Heverly all added a RBI in the inning. 

The Stags and Kingsmen found themselves in a deadlock for the next three innings as both teams' pitchers and defenses held strong. 

With Frazier in hot water in the sixth inning, Clay Rickerman took over for the remaining four innings. He faced 20 batters, allowing just six hits and three runs. He picked up his fourth save of the year. 

The Stags began to build a comeback in the sixth and managed to score three runs in the inning. CMS tried to continue their momentum in the seventh inning as they scored once more.  

The Kingsmen scored two insurance runs in the top of the ninth, courtesy of Scalzo's 2-run home run. The Stags scored one more run in the bottom of the ninth, but Rickerman slammed the door on them, picking up a huge series win. 

In game one, Luke Wechsler took the mound and pitched for 4.1 innings. He allowed nine hits and five runs with two strikeouts. 

Cal Lutheran started the in the second and CMS quickly tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the inning. The Kingsmen broke through in the third and took the lead. Cal Lutheran managed to score four runs as Brendan Durfee and Jalen Parks both had 2-RBI hits. 

Bryan Tierney was next to the mound as he pitched for 0.2 innings. He gave up two hits and two runs, while getting one strikeout. He was relieved by Gregory Pimentel who pitched for 1.0 inning. He allowed three hits and two runs with a strikeout. 

The Kingsmen were able to hold onto their lead for a bit, but the Stags found their fight in the fifth inning as they scored four runs. The Kingsmen tried to make a comeback in the top of the sixth inning with a run of their own, but the Stags held the lead at 7-6. Heverly doubled home Blandino for the sixth point.

Tristan Dupont took over as pitcher for the next 1.2 innings. He allowed five hits and three runs, but had one strikeout. The Stage held a 11-6 advantage after seven innings. He was followed by the Kingsmen's final pitcher of the game, Dean Olsson. He faced one batter and struck him out. Cal Lutheran tried to bounce back, but were unable to recover as the Stags took the game. 

The Kingsmen have four non-conference games, all at home, before jumping back into SCIAC play. Cal Lutheran hosts Bethesda on Tuesday at 3 p.m.

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