Irvine, Calif. – The Orange County Riptide bounced back from a 4-3 loss against the San Luis Obispo Blues on Tuesday and threw a 3-0 combined no-hitter at the Blues’ home park on Wednesday.
“It’s a really hard thing to do in general, but for four of our guys to come in and throw a no-hitter in summer ball, it felt amazing,” Founder and General Manager Moe Geoghegan said. “Since I’ve been in the [California Collegiate] League, nobody has thrown a team no-hitter. I was really excited to see how excited the players were.”
On the bump to start the game for the Riptide was Noah Carabajal (Long Beach State). The right-hander punched out four hitters and walked three over the course of five innings of work. In total, Carabajal retired 17 Blues batters and recorded his first win of the season.
“I think he just went with the plan straight from the get-go: attack the zone right away, get ahead first pitch fastball,” Assistant Coach Andrew Ramos said. “I pulled Carabajal aside before we started the game and told him ‘Play your game, this is you.’”
Brown and his coaching staff called upon Carson Case (University of Nevada, Reno) to take over for Carabajal in the sixth. Case successfully defended the Riptide no-hitter through the seventh inning, but was only able to record two outs in the seventh before getting pulled.
The gate to the Riptide bullpen opened and out ran Trevor Meisner (Utah Tech) to record the last out in the seventh, which he did by striking the batter out swinging. His night ended in the eighth after walking a batter followed by an error at third base.
Daniel Naughton (Gonzaga) entered the game in the eighth inning with one out on the board and two Blues runners on first and second. A quick putout records the second out of the inning before a hit batter loads the bases. With tensions high, a force-out at second base by shortstop Chase Valentine (Tennessee) ended the inning and helped the Riptide escape a potentially dangerous situation. Naughton completed the save, securing the first combined no-hitter in Orange County Riptide history.
“I told all the pitchers ‘I want to see you guys in the driver’s seat. Take advantage. I want to see you guys fly and do your own thing,’” Ramos said. “I am very pleased to see that happen today.”
On the offensive side, third baseman Shane Taylor (Utah Tech) broke the 0-0 tie in the top of the sixth inning after scoring on a passed ball. The Riptide extended their lead over the Blues 3-0 in the top of the seventh as a single hit by Santino Panaro (UNLV) drove in Nathan Smith (Tennessee), and Valentine stole home.
The final out and celebration from the first no hitter in Riptide history. Huge shoutout to pitchers Noah Carabajal (@LBDirtbags) @CarsonCase4 (@NevadaBaseball) @trevmize9 (@UtahTech_BASE) and @DanielNaughto19 (@ZagBaseball) on the incredible feat.#OCRiptidefamily #CCLBaseball pic.twitter.com/hpNhfBvOWI
— OC Riptide Baseball (@ocriptide) June 30, 2022
“It’s a hard week for them, especially after a trip up to Northern California, so I think that was great for them,” Geoghegan said. “[Thursday’s] game is still a really big game, but if we would have lost this one it would have made Thursday an extreme have-to-win game, so we will see how they do [Thursday] night.”
The Riptide head home victorious and look to extend their winning streak to two games on Thursday as they host the Arroyo Seco Saints at 6:35 p.m. (Box Score)