Santa Clara avoids sweep with five run fifth inning in finale
THE SANTA CLARA
April 21, 2016
After dropping the first two games, the Broncos bounced back and secured a 7-5 victory over the University of San Diego Toreros.
Jason Seever took the hill for Santa Clara, but got off to a rough start. The first two batters reached base against Seever, and after a wild pitch, San Diego had a 1-0 lead. The Toreros kept the pressure on with a single up the middle, leaving Seever in a jam with runners on first and third bases and no outs.
This was easily the worst stretch of the game for Seever, and he got out of the jam relatively unscathed. He did allow one more run on a sacrifice fly, but recorded three straight outs to end the inning.
Santa Clara responded right away, as first baseman Jake Brodt led off the inning with a solo home run.
The score remained at 2-1 heading into the bottom of the fourth, where San Diego led off with a double to right center.
Seever recorded the next two outs and would have had a third if center fielder Kert Woods didn’t drop the ball. Defense was a challenge all weekend for the Broncos, as they committed 10 errors in three games.
San Diego added a run off the error and was threatening with a runner on third. But Seever came through with his fourth strike out of the game.
Again, the Broncos’ bats responded immediately. Joe Becht began the inning with a walk. Three wild pitches later, Becht crossed home plate.
After an RBI single by Grant Meylan, the score was even at 3-3. The bats continued to produce, and Santa Clara had two walks, four hits and four runs in that inning all before recording an out. Kert Woods came to the plate next, and redeemed his error with a sacrifice fly. San Diego then turned a double play, but the damage was done.
The Broncos padded their lead in the top of the eighth with an RBI single from Austin Reyes. But San Diego would not go quietly and managed two runs off reliever Jacob Steffens, forcing Coach O’Brien to call on Max Kuhns for the six-out save.
Kuhns has been dominant all year and was no different on Sunday. He pitched two scoreless innings and racked up his eleventh save of the season.
Sitting in ninth place, the Broncos have some ground to make up if they want to see the playoffs. However, Santa Clara has 15 conference games remaining on its schedule. The opportunity for a turnaround is still there, but they don’t have much room to spare.
The Broncos quest for the playoffs will continue this Friday as they host Gonzaga University for a three game series at Stephen Schott Stadium.
Contact Andrew Slap at email@example.com or call (408) 554-4852.