Round Two of this week’s Pacheco-Los Banos home-and-home series went to Pacheco, but it didn’t come easy in a 10-9 Pacheco win that went eight innings.
And it was sophomore Jerry Salomon, who was called up to varsity just before league play began, that was the hero with a walk-off bloop single in the bottom of the eighth inning that carried just over the glove of second baseman Chester Amaral and scored senior Carlos Angulo.
“A hit’s a hit, no matter where it lands,” Angulo said.
Salomon went 3-for-5 with two RBI and a triple, one of six triples for Pacheco.
“Best thing ever,” Salomon said about the last one. “My third base hit of this season. All three base hits I got today were my only base hits.”
The Panthers’ offense exploded for 18 hits, with seven members of the lineup reaching base twice or more.
“They started timing Chester a little bit,” Los Banos coach Mike Lemos said. “With a pitcher without a lot of velocity who hits his spots, he has to hit his spots even better later in the game.”
Pacheco’s hitters seemed untouchable in two innings — a five-run third that saw triples by Angulo, Adam Lopez and Salomon and tied the game 5-5, and a four-run sixth sparked by triples from Kenneth Remulla and Omar Sierra that put Pacheco up 9-8.
Los Banos tied the score in the top of the seventh when Delvonte Moore singled and advanced to third on an error while stealing second, then scored on an Amaral sacrifice fly. Richard Soliz opened the bottom of the frame with a triple, but LB reliever Chris Castillo struck out two looking and induced a shallow fly ball to end the inning.
Los Banos wasn’t without offense of its own, with 12 hits, including a Gabe Lopez triple, a Moore double and a Corbin Lilledahl ground-rule double that would have been a triple had it stayed in the park.