It seems nearly every baseball season the team to beat in the Prep League is Pasadena Poly, as the Panthers scored three runs in the first inning and four runs in the second against Flintridge Prep last Friday, and held on for an 8-6 decision in the league opener.
Give the host Rebels credit for making it respectable, because it could have gotten out of hand.
Prep pitcher Kyle McDonald coughed up the first three runs, and was relieved by Clayton Weirick, who allowed four runs, but then tossed a shutout over the next three innings.
Poly is the defending league champion, and is expected at the top when the season concludes.
Jordan Kutzer was on the mound for Poly, and felt enlivened after the 7-0 bulge, but it was trimmed after the Rebels scored a run in the third inning on an error, and two more runs came home on a balk and a grounder.
Kutzer was replaced in the fourth inning when Dylan Arya doubled with no outs, advancing a runner to third base, and he later scored on a wild pitch.
Prep narrowed Poly’s lead to 7-5 on a double play, and 7-6 in the fifth inning, but the Panthers tacked on a run in the sixth to make it a two-run edge.
In Prep’s final frame, Alex Sierra was hit by a pitch and Scott Tsangeos walked. A sacrifice bunt went awry, and the next two batters failed to drive in any runners.
In other play, Crescenta Valley High beat Monrovia at Stengel Field Wednesday, with the Falcons taking the nonleague doubleheader, 4-1 and 6-1 in the night-cap.
Kyle Murray went the distance and fanned nine in the first game, while Troy Mulcahey picked up the victory and smacked a two-run homer for the Falcons (5-1) in the second contest.
Pitching was at the forefront as St. Francis’s Joey Malham surrendered four hits with four strikeouts in six innings during a 6-3 win over Notre Dame (Sherman Oaks) in a Mission League opener Tuesday at Jackie Robinson Field.
St. Francis (4-2 and 1-0 in league) struck for four runs in the first as Notre Dame (4-2 and 0-1 in league) picked up its initial hit in the fourth.
David Olmedo-Barrera socked a run-scoring double to make it 1-0, Jeff Garavaglia’s infield hit made it 2-0, Tei Vanderford’s single added a run, and Pete Hofman’s sacrifice fly gave the Golden Knights a 4-0 lead.