Streaks Snapped as Catch Beat Barons, Barrick and Malis Homer

Game Recap 6/25/16 from So. Cal. FCA Baseball on Vimeo.


By Keaton A. Moore - Sports Information

La Mirada, CA-The Southern California Catch were relieved the snap their losing streak with a victory over the team that started it four games earlier, the Academy Barons. A pair of Catch players, Josh Barrick (Liberty University) and Zach Malis (Grand Canyon University), hit their first home runs of the summer en route to Southern California’s 7-5 win.

Earlier in the week, the Barons were ranked No. 14 in the nation by Collegiate Summer Baseball because of their six-game winning streak, which lifted them to the best record in the California Collegiate League and a significant lead in the South Division. However, the Catch snapped the Barons win streak, bringing their division deficit down to 2.5 games and their conference record up to 6-6.

Aside from a rough first inning, in which the Barons took a three-run lead, starting pitcher Zach Clinton (Liberty University) pitched the Catch through six solid innings of work, allowing only four hits and three runs with five strikeouts. In the Catch’s side of the second inning, Barrick launched a towering home run into left field and scored Southern California’s first run of the game.

Three innings later, Murray’s two-out single led to three consecutive walks which brought the Catch up 2-3 in the top of the fifth. Robert Bultena (Orange Coast College) tied the game at three in the top of the seventh as his first hit of the summer brought home Barrick after he hit a leadoff double. In the same inning, Evan Sandman (Dallas Baptist University), who ended his night 1-4 with three RBIs, drove in two runs and gave the Catch a 5-3 lead. Later, Josh Rojas (University of Hawaii-Manao) scored on a passed ball and capped the Catch’s four-run seventh inning.

A solo home run from Malis in the top of the ninth gave the Catch much needed insurance as the Nick Wernke (West Virginia University) closed out the game with the tying run at the plate. In the end, Wernke’s ninth inning earned him the save while Clinton improved to 3-1 after his impressive performance on the mound. Jeff Murray (Santa Ana College), Barrick and Rojas fueled the offense to the team’s sixth interleague victory and each one ended their night with two hits and at least one run scored.

Running away with their first win of the summer against the Barons, the Catch have another valuable opportunity to move back up in the South Division standings with a home game against the Academy on Sunday, June 26 at 2 p.m.