Los Angeles Preps: J.C. Cloney

Valencia comes back, beats West Ranch

April, 18, 2012

STEVENSON RANCH -- Valencia’s Brian Mundell drilled a two-run double in the top of the seventh inning to break a 3-3 tie and give the Vikings a 5-3, come-from-behind victory over Foothill League rival West Ranch on Wednesday.

Mundell’s double capped a seventh-inning hit parade that produced two runs and provided the difference in a game between two of the top teams in league.

Trey Williams led off the inning with a single and Keston Hiura followed with another single to put runners on first and second with no outs.

That set the scene for Mundell to deliver in the clutch.

“He really adjusted from his first two at-bats, when he struggled,” Valencia coach Jared Snyder said. “He doesn’t put a lot of pressure on himself. He goes up there looking for his pitch. He just takes quality swings at all times. He loves that situation.”

Valencia (12-6) had to rally late in the game to erase a two-run deficit. West Ranch had a 3-1 lead in the third inning before the Vikings started scratching back in the game.

Valencia scored a run in the fourth to cut the West Ranch lead to one run. The Vikings scored again in the fifth inning to tie the score, 3-3.

Mundell knocked in the tying run on a groundout. He drove in three runs in the game despite striking out in his first two at-bats.

“Brian came up clutch,” Valencia centerfielder A.J. Balta said. “He got his pitch. He handled it. He did what he’s supposed to do with that pitch, outside, drive it the other way.”

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Saugus baseball stuns West Ranch

March, 28, 2012

The Saugus baseball team scored four runs in the fourth inning and handed West Ranch its first Foothill League loss of the season.

Saugus second baseman Austin Rodriguez drove in two runs and led the Centurions to a 6-4 win over West Ranch.

Saugus starter Justin Donatella pitched six strong innings, giving up two runs against the dangerous West Ranch lineup.

Saugus took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on an RBI single by Nick Shrode.

The Centurions went up 5-0 in the fourth inning scoring two runs on a errant throw on a sacrifice bunt. Andru Cardenas knocked in a run on a groundout and Rodriguez capped the rally with an RBI single.

“He struck out looking twice,” Saugus coach John Maggiora said about Rodriguez. “He could have gone in the tank right there, but he didn’t. He did a great job.”

West Ranch, ranked No. 14 in the state by ESPN HS, scratched across a run in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jake Bird’s RBI single cut the Saugus lead to four runs, 5-1.

West Ranch’s J.C. Cloney made it 5-2 with a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning.

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