HS Baseball: Rancho Christian Shuts Out Calvary Murrieta 4-0 at The Diamond in Lake Elsinore

Trevor Jones Pitches a 2-Hit Gem for his Eighth Win of the Season

By Lynn Guerin

The Rancho Christian Eagles had 3 strong forces providing motivation for their 4-0 win over Calvary Murrieta Thursday afternoon. First they are on a quest for excellence as they drive toward a run to the CIF Playoffs. Second, they are trying to secure anther South Valley league championship and undefeated league season. Finally, they were inspired by stepping on a bigger stage and experiencing a glimpse of a dream somewhere down the road.

Those forces were more than sufficient to spark Rancho Christian to its 14th straight win overall and 8th straight in South Valley league play, as the Eagles posted a 4-0 shutout victory at the friendly confines of Storm Stadium.

Rancho’s normally high powered offense which is averaging over 10 runs per game was held to four runs by very good Calvary pitching from Noah Sweeton and Christian Ortiz. But it was lapses in Calvary’s defense, that gave Rancho the opportunities they needed to put enough runs up to come out a winner.

The first inning set the tone for the contest and was pivotal in the outcome. Calvary had their best scoring chance when Brandon Baker led off with a single. Sean Butler reached on an error. Calvary had two on with no outs. Trevor Jones who was superb from the next batter through the rest of the game, got Calvary’s 3-4-5 hitters on a ground out ,a pop up to the shortstop and a comebacker to keep Calvary off the scoreboard.

In Rancho’s bottom half of the first inning, with two outs, Trevor Jones was hit by the pitch. Jones stole second. Carter Treadway worked a walk. Colton Bulger hit a one skip rocket right at second baseman Sean Butler who couldn’t handle the heat and Jones scored from second on the error. Rancho lead 1- 0. It was the first of seven errors in the game for Calvary who came in knowing it is always hard to beat a good team without strong defense.

Rancho scored three times in the bottom of the second inning. As in the first inning all the runs scored after 2 outs. Joey Hauck reached on a single, and then stole his 26th base of the season in 27 attempts. Taylor Tosches drove Hauck home with a long single to the gap in left center, then went to second on the throw home. Tosches scored on a single by Trevor Jones, making the score 3-0.Tosches and Jones continue to be the top hitting duo in the in the south valley league with averages over .500.

Jones actually scored on the same play with what turned out to be the maximum hustle play of the game. On the throw home attempting to nail Tosches, Jones sprinted to second. The catcher threw to second in an attempt to get Jones. The ball got past the second baseman and Jones motored to third. The throw to third to get Jones also skipped past the bag. Jones now running on fumes and his last legs broke for home and was able to slide under the tag-safe for Rancho’s fourth and final run.

At the end of two innings the final score was already on the scoreboard- Rancho Christian 4-Calvary Murrieta 0.

From the third inning on the game story was all about tight defense from the Eagles and the great pitching of Trevor Jones. Jones sat down 14 straight hitters with pinpoint control of his pitches and amazing efficiency. In fact, he only through 77 pitches in 7 innings. In the sixth inning he achieved perfection getting three hitters on 3 pitches. In the process Jones picked up his 8th win of the season with only one loss.

Rancho Christian‘s record for the season stands at 18 wins and 3 defeats. They are 8-0 in South Valley League play, and will attempt to keep that league record blemish free when they meet the Nuview Bridge Knights Saturday morning at 10 am on their home field.