Irvine, Calif. – The Orange County Riptide scored five runs off six hits in the fourth inning to pull ahead of the MLB Academy Barons on Sunday, beating the Barons 5-4.
The Barons put the first run on the board in the second inning after an RBI double brought in the runner who reached on a walk issued by the starting pitcher for the Riptide, Reed Schaefer (University of Arizona). Schaefer faced 11 Barons batters before getting pulled in the third inning. Of the eight outs Schaefer recorded, three were strikeouts.
A rally in the top of the fourth inning allowed the Riptide offense to pull ahead of the Barons, where they would remain for the rest of the game.
The production began with a single hit by leadoff batter Austin Kryszczuk (UNLV). Designated hitter Zach Thomas (Utah Tech) followed right behind him with a ball hit off the right-center field wall, advancing him to second and putting Kryszczuk in scoring position at third base.
With runners on second and third, first baseman Bubba Filia (UC San Diego) stepped into the batter’s box and sent a ball into center field that drove in both Kryszczuk and Thomas. This was Filia’s fourth hit in 24 at-bats, as well as his fourth RBI of the season.
“I started out the summer struggling a little bit, and I just wanted to kind of get back into my groove, trust myself and just not try to do too much,” Filia said. “I was glad I was able to come through in that spot.”
The scoring did not stop with Filia’s single. Right fielder Wilson Galvan (UT Arlington) and catcher Blake Penso (UC Irvine) both advanced runners and reached on base hits, setting the stage for shortstop Chase Valentine (Tennessee) to do more damage. Valentine brought home Filia with a sacrifice fly, and around third came Galvan who scored on an error by the Barons catcher.
The Riptide scored one more run in the inning to extend their lead over the Barons 5-1. The run reached home plate off a base hit from third baseman Shane Taylor (Utah Tech). A fly out to right field hit by Santino Panaro (UNLV) ended the inning, stopping one batter short of batting around the order.
After the fourth inning, the Riptide fell short in bringing their runners home, leaving the amount of runs scored at five.
Ryan Daugherty (St. Mary’s) entered the game in relief of Schaefer and pitched through the fifth inning. Before Daugherty was able to earn the win for the game, the Barons had to face the wrath of three righties and one lefty out of the Riptide bullpen.
Caleb Turner (UC Riverside) left the game in the seventh inning before getting to record an out. With two runners on base, Trevor Meisner (Utah Tech) entered the game. The Barons put pressure on the Riptide in the seventh, after a three-run home run turned it into a one-run ball game at 5-4.
Luke Higgins (Golden West College) took over in the ninth inning, shutting down the chance for the Barons to steal the win from the Riptide with a ground out, fly out to center field, and a strike out. This 1-2-3 inning earned Higgins his first save of the summer.
The Riptide will spend their Fourth of July at Jackie Robinson Field playing the Arroyo Seco Saints starting at 5:05 p.m. (Box Score)