News Photo
Luke Coffey (Photo by Ron Smith)
Baseball - Tue, Mar. 28, 2017

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- A three-run home run in the sixth inning by Luke Coffey proved to be the difference in Westmont Baseball's (18-12) 5-2 win over the Flames of Bethesda (15-12).

The first half of the game was a pitchers' duel between starters Grant Gardner of Westmont and Bethesda's Daniel Arrellano. Neither pitcher allowed a run during the first five innings. Arrellano surrendered just one hit while Gardner held Bethesda to two.

The sixth inning turned out to be an offensive turning point for both teams.

Ryan McPhillips walked to start off the top of the sixth and then stole second. Two outs later, Arellano stepped to the plate, and hit a ground ball to short that could have ended the inning. However, umpire C.J. Huck was hit in the leg by the batted ball resulting in the play being called dead. Arellano was awarded first base on a single while McPhillips remained at second.

The play also ended Gardner's time on the mound, relieved by Daniel Butler. At the same time, Andres Wright replaced Arellano on first as a courtesy runner.

A passed ball moved McPhillips to third and Wright to second before Adrian Flores singled to center field driving in both base runners.

Westmont also lit up the scoreboard in the sixth inning. With two away, Derek Rodigo reached on an error and then took second when Michael Pollex was walked. That's when Coffey stepped to the plate and deposited an 0-1 pitch over the left field fence, giving Westmont a 3-2 lead.

Westmont tacked on one more run, before the inning ended. After Isaiah Leach walked and stole second base, Matt Matlock walked, Taylor Bush drove home the fourth run of the inning with a double to center field.

Coffey added his fourth RBI of the game when he doubled down the left field line to drive in Michael Stefanic in the bottom of the seventh. With one out, Stefanic had reached on a single to left and then stole both second and third bases.

Butler (3-2) was awarded the win after pitching one and one-third scoreless inning and allowing just one hit. Butler struck out two and did not allow a walk. Lance Simpson picked up his third save of the season by pitching the ninth inning. Simpson did not allow a run or a hit and produced on strike out. Arrellano (4-1) was charged with the loss.

The Warriors and Flames will match up again next Tuesday at Russ Carr Field. Before the rematch happens, however, Westmont will host Shepherd in a three-game series on Friday and Saturday.