Irvine, Calif. – After losing their previous game against the Santa Barbara Foresters, the OC Riptide emerged victorious, defeating the Foresters 5-1. A strong, early lead carried the Riptide to a victory, with a dominant performance by Tyler Valdez (ASU) on the mound.
Dominating from the get-go
Tyler Valdez (ASU) started for the Riptide. Valdez has been on fire for the Riptide. Coming into this game, in the 15 innings he has pitched during CCL play, he’s allowed one run. He started the first inning with two strikeouts and gave the team the momentum they needed to score in the bottom half of the inning.
It’s been a while since the Riptide scored first in their last week of games. They wasted no time in the first inning to make up for the runs they hadn’t scored. With the bases loaded, Patrick Hackworth (UC San Diego) had a bases-clearing single and brought home Nathan Cadena (San Jose State), and Grady Morgan (Fresno State). Reese Chapman (Tennessee) made it home after the right fielder had a bad throw to the third baseman.
Defensively, the Riptide held it down behind Tyler Vadez (ASU). Notably, Connor Clift (USC) caught a runner stealing 2nd and Reese Chapman (Tennessee) had a diving catch in center. Patrick Hackworth (UC San Diego) had a diving catch to end the fourth inning. Tyler Valdez (ASU) gunned down a runner on 2nd, picking him off to end the top of the fifth inning.
After six innings on the mound, Tyler Valdez (ASU) struck out an impressive nine batters and walked none. One Forester run scored in the sixth inning, but Valdez kept it scoreless through five. Valdez said that what was working so well for him was, “Just throwing every pitch with conviction, going and getting guys, and letting everybody else do the work. Letting the infielders make plays and outfielders too.”
The Riptide will travel to San Luis Obispo this week to play the San Luis Obispo Blues on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m.