As the number of games being played dwindled down to only a small handful on Friday afternoon, Heritage made the most of its trip from Brentwood to Vacaville, where the Patriots took on the perennially powerful Vacaville Bulldogs.
The visitors exploded for eight runs in the first inning and cruised from there, winning 14-5 to improve their record to 4-0 for the young season, one that is now in jeopardy amidst wide-spread cancellations and postponements as communities across the country attempt to slow down the spread of the coronavirus.
Keith Jones and Chaz Myers each had bases-clearing triples during the first inning for the Patriots, while Brandon Marion singled in a run and Casey Turturici doubled in a pair of runs. It was just the start to a big day for Turturici, who drew a walk to force in a run during the second inning and smashed a two-run homer to right field in the top of the fourth, a shot which made the score 11-0.
The Bulldogs used an RBI double from Brian McClellin and four run-scoring singles to cut into the Heritage lead during the bottom of the fourth, making the score 11-5, but Chase Goddard entered in relief for the Patriots and slammed the door. Meanwhile, Jacob Dahl added an RBI single in the top of the sixth and Marion's fourth hit of the day - a run-scoring single in the top of the seventh - put the exclamation mark on a big win for Heritage.
"We are looking at it as we are not done, but merely taking a break," said Heritage coach Kevin Brannan, whose team reached the NCS Division I title game last season. "We trust us each of our governing bodies to lead us through this tough time, and we will be ready when we are called."
Marion led the Heritage attack with four hits, while Jones tripled twice and drove in three runs. Turturici had five RBIs for the Patriots while Myers drove in a pair. Starting pitcher Ryan Jackson allowed one hit in three innings, while Westmont commit Goddard tossed two and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief, allowing just one hit and striking out a pair.
Casa Grande goes extras to beat Windsor
If the season is in jeopardy, Casa Grande and Windsor decided to play a few extra innings on Friday afternoon, before the Gauchos scratched out a single run in the top of the 10th inning to win 1-0.
Jake Lannert opened the top of the 10th with a single to right field, and advanced to second on a ground out. Dylan Peterson then hit a hard ground ball to shortstop, which resulted in an error, and the resulting errant throw allowed Lannert to score from second.
Windsor got runners on first and second with two outs in the bottom half of the inning before Nick Tobin induced a ground ball to Lannert at first base to end the game.
The inability to score spoiled a phenomenal outing on the mound by Windsor junior Gary Hall, who allowed just one hit while striking out 12 batters. Sophomore Joseph Soltanizadeh had a game-high three hits for the Jaguars.
Clayton Valley wins fourth straight
The visiting Eagles scored six times in the top of the third inning and cruised from there to the 9-4 win over host Vintage on Thursday.
Ryan Watada's two-run double capped the big frame for Clayton Valley, which added two more runs in the top of the fourth on a run-scoring single by Jacob Krieg and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Jason Drollinger.
Mason Oakley struck out five in four scoreless innings on the mound for Clayton Valley, which improved to 6-1-1 overall with the win.
Big first inning lifts Willow Glen past SLV
Willow Glen scored all of its runs in the top of the first inning to defeat San Lorenzo Valley, 8-1, on Thursday.
Arthur Jones and Ryan Davis both had RBI doubles for the Rams, while Nate Marcus drove in a pair with a two-out single.