Last week’s two-game series between the first- and last-place baseball teams in the SCVAL De Anza Division turned out closer than most would have expected.
Gabe Stewart, head coach of league-leading Los Altos, said seventh-place Cupertino “gave the Eagles all they could handle in two tense games.”
Los Altos clipped Cupertino 4-3 in the March 27 opener and needed nine innings to edge the Pioneers 2-0 in Friday’s finale.
In the initial game, the host Eagles (7-1 league, 14-1 overall) fell behind by three runs in the first frame. They got one back in the second when Brock Susko doubled home Zach Fuchs. Los Altos tied the game in the fifth; Juan Angulo’s sacrifice fly brought home pinch runner Peter Daseking and Aidan Brenner, who reached based on an infield single, soon scored on a walk. Angulo then drove home what proved to be the winning run in the sixth with a sac fly that scored pinch runner Seiji Shimizu.
Los Altos pitcher Connor Altinger took care of the rest, securing the complete-game win by striking out the final batter in the seventh. He improved to 3-0 for the season.
Friday’s game at Cupertino (1-7, 5-8) was scoreless for eight innings, though the Eagles had their chances. Los Altos advanced a runner to third base four times – and loaded the bases in the fifth – but Pioneer pitcher Kyle Sheets got out of each jam unscathed.
Los Altos ace Ryan Baum had a no-hitter going through seven innings with 10 strikeouts. The senior gave up his first hit in the eighth and a sacrifice bunt moved Brandon Takaki to second. Baum struck out the next batter, intentionally walked the following one and – after surrendering a single that loaded the bases – induced a pop up to thwart the threat.
Baum received some offensive support in the ninth. Daseking and Conner Kendall hit back-to-back singles and Angulo was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Cupertino then mishandled Brenner’s grounder and he beat the throw to first, which allowed Daseking to score. Baum provided Los Altos with an insurance run by singling home Kendall.
Nearing his pitch limit, Baum took the mound in the bottom of the inning and got the first batter to fly out. The next Pioneer singled, but Baum induced a double play to end the game.
Mountain View last week ran its winning streak to six games, none bigger than the 2-1 victory at Los Gatos March 26. The teams entered the game tied for first place in the De Anza Division and shared the league title last year.
The Spartans scored single runs in the fourth and sixth innings before the Wildcats put up one in the seventh. Jessica Day doubled to score Rachel Dove in the fourth and Aysia Minor’s grounder to first brought home pinch runner Arya Patel in the sixth.
Pitcher Ilona Sullivan kept the Wildcats in check, striking out 13 batters and surrendering four hits in a complete-game effort.
Mountain View improved to 4-0 in league with Thursday’s 6-0 shutout of Homestead. The host Spartans (6-2 overall) led 4-0 in the fourth and added two more runs in the sixth.
Day drove in four runs and stole home in the first frame. Pitcher Simiran Lauwers went the distance, striking out eight, walking one and allowing just three hits for the win.
Track & field
The Los Altos girls and boys teams both improved to 4-0 in the De Anza Division last week at Gunn. The girls won 89-32 and the boys prevailed 85-41 March 26.
Thea Mollerstedt led the girls with wins in the 100- and 300-meter hurdles. The senior’s 300 time of 45.37 seconds was “a major PR (personal record),” Eagles co-head coach Dave Barth said, and it ranks No. 2 in the Central Coast Section. Mollerstedt ran the 100 hurdles in 16.17.
The Los Altos girls also received victories from Elana Eisenberg in the 400 dash (1:04.20), Jessie Carlson in the 100 dash (12.80), Anna Zaeske in the 200 dash (26.29), Anya Gupta in the 3,200 run (12:38.48), Elisabeth Livingston in the long jump (15 feet, 8.75 inches), Maura Kelleher in the high jump (5-2) and the 4x100 relay team (50.70).
On the boys side, Jimmy Dessouki won a pair of events for the Eagles. The sophomore placed first in the 100 dash (11.86) and the 300 hurdles (41.59). Teammate Weston Fairey ran a season-best 22.71 to claim the 200 dash. Los Altos’ other wins came from Adam Sage in the 1,600 (4:38.38), Max Conte in the 110 hurdles (16.92), Daniel Ghasemfar in the 3,200 run (10:11.78), Oliver Yu in the triple jump (41-4.25) and Justin Rosen in the high jump (5-11).
Los Altos’ top competitors participated in last weekend’s Stanford Invitational.
Sage paced the boys by placing second in the 3,200 with a PR of 9:27.21 The boys’ 4x100 team came in fifth (43.00), Fairey finished 10th in the 100 dash (11.17) and Owen MacKenzie was 13th in the 1,600 (4:20.92).
For the girls, Mollerstedt took third in the 400 hurdles (1:04.17) and Kelleher was eighth in the high jump (5-1/4).
Mountain View maintained its first-place standing in the El Camino Division (4-0) by winning both matches last week. The Spartans beat Fremont 231-261 March 25 at Los Altos Golf & Country Club and toppled Santa Clara 220-242 two days later at Santa Clara Golf & Tennis Club. Michael Bringas and William Zhou led Mountain View (5-2 overall) with rounds of 42 both days.