COSTA MESA, Calif. — Vanguard came off a hard loss against The Master's University in the first game of the weekend series, but came back to win the series after taking both games of the Saturday double header. While the bats were slow for Vanguard in the beginning of the series, Vanguard picked up the pace during the double header, earning 18 hits in game one and 11 hits in game two. Game one saw a strong performance from Brandon Sandoval (SR/Fallbrook, CA) and Michael Fuchs (JR/Irvine, CA) as each of them went 3-5 at the plate to help post a final score of 9-2, Vanguard. Game two saw fewer hits than game one, but the Lions gained the lead early and didn't let up. The Lion's defense helped maintain that lead, leaving nine runners on base, and the last out saw a Vanguard victory, 8-3.
Game One: Vanguard 9, The Master's 2
The Lions were looking for an opening and they found it in the top of the first as Brandon Sandoval hit a lead off double to center field. Shane Elias-Calles (JR/Mission Viejo, CA) followed it up with a single to right field that let Sandoval advance to third. The first run scored on a balk by Aaron Alexander that brought in Sandoval.
After a scoreless second inning, Vanguard was ready to have some fun. Kody Wright (SO/Bakersfield, CA) started off the third inning with a lead off single to centerfield. Sandoval then hit a double to centerfield that brought in the courtesy runner, Bryce Wetherell (JR/Chattaroy, WA). With a batter hit by a pitch and a single to left, Brock Eissman (SR/San Clemente, CA) came up with bases loaded and hit a single to right center to bring in Sandoval. Michael Fuchs was up next and hit a 2 RBI single to centerfield to bring the score to 5-0, Vanguard. Tanner Perry (JR/El Cajon, CA) loaded the bases with a single to left field, and Josh Weeks (FR/Murrieta, CA) was up to bat. A single by Weeks down the right field line would bring in Fuchs and Eissman to give the Lions a seven run lead.
Both the Lions and Mustangs posted zeros in the fourth inning, and The Master's put up a run in the top of the fifth. Vanguard answered the run in the bottom of the seventh. Michael Fuchs was the lead off hitter and went yard, earning his second homerun of the season. Sandoval brought in the last run for Vanguard on a single to left field that brought in Weeks. The Master's posted one more run in the top of the ninth, but, after the last out, Vanguard was on top, 9-2.
Chris Lumanlan (SR/Irvine, CA) (8-1) was instrumental on the mound, earning his eighth win this season. Lumanlan put in the work all 8 innings he was in, giving up 7 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, and 3 strikeouts. After a strong start, the Lion's brought in Kurt Gairing (JR/Corona, CA) for a couple batters and then handed the ball over to Roberto Johnson (SR/San Marcos, CA) to close it out.
Game Two: Vanguard 8, The Master's 3
With game one done, the Lions retook the field in game two ready for a repeat. Sandoval hit a familiar lead off single to left field and Elias-Calles followed it up with a single to right. Fuchs brought Sandoval and Elias-Calles home with a double to centerfield, putting the first two runs on the board. With Fuchs on second, Tanner Perry came up and hit one out of the park to give the Pride a four run lead.
A scoreless inning and one run posted by the Mustangs later, the Lions were back at it. Grady Conner (FR/Costa Mesa, CA) hit a triple in the top of the fourth and then scored on a fielding error, and then Elias-Calles hit a double down the left field line to bring in Sandoval. The Master's posted two runs in the top of the fifth, but Vanguard came back to get two more in the bottom of the sixth. Sandoval came up with a runner on first and hit a homerun, his seventh of the season. The Master's couldn't score anymore and the final score stood at 8-3, Vanguard.
The starting pitcher in game two was Tyler Steele (SO/Kingsburg, CA) (8-2) who went 4.2 innings, gave up 1 hit, 2 runs, 5 walks, and 3 strikeouts. Tyler Skinner (JR/Dos Palos, CA) and Josh Bailly (JR/Union City. CA) each came in for a few batters before Jake Mellenthin (SR/New Plymouth, ID) (9) came in. In 1.2 innings, Melenthin gave up 1 hit and earned 1 strikeout while earning the save.
Next Game: Tuesday, April 25th against Antelope Valley at 2:30 p.m.