Grizzlies' lead shrinks in SFL baseball standings

Granite Bay falls to Rocklin; Woodcreek lacks big hits; Roseville pounds Del Oro
By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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Granite Bay High School continued to hit the ball Monday but not with runners in scoring position. Likewise, Woodcreek totaled 11 hits but lacked the big one. Meanwhile, Roseville hit another grand slam.

The result: So long, two-game lead for Granite Bay in the Sierra Foothill League baseball standings. Hello, pennant race.

The Grizzlies fell to Sac-Joaquin Section Division II defending-champion Rocklin 9-1. Roseville blitzed Del Oro 11-1, and Woodcreek lost at home to Nevada Union 4-3.

Heading into today’s second games in each three-game series, Granite Bay is 13-8-1 overall and 7-3 in the SFL. Roseville (15-7) and Rocklin (13-8) are 6-4. Woodcreek (11-10) and Nevada Union (15-8) are 5-5. Del Oro (5-14) is 1-9.

“Oh man, it’s a blast. I don’t think you can determine who’s going to win anything at this point,” Granite Bay coach Pat Esposito said. “Five games to play, and there’s just too much going on.”

Said Woodcreek coach Kelly Mayo, “It’s getting crazy.”

Granite Bay allowed three runs in the first inning and managed to score only on a bases-loaded walk, even though it had 10 hits.

“They did a lot of the little things that make them who they are,” Esposito said of Rocklin. “We left a lot of guys on base. We’ve been scoring a lot of runs and getting eight, 10, 11 hits a game. (Monday) wasn’t any different. We just couldn’t push them across the dish.”

At Roseville, the Tigers took a lead on Nick Blaser’s two-run double in the bottom of the second and pulled away with six runs in the third.

Zach Anderson hit a grand slam and went 2 for 2 with five RBI. Blaser added a home run into the houses beyond the ball yard and totaled four RBI. Beau Smith had two hits, and No. 9 hitter Braxton Phillips went 2 for 3 with a ground-rule double. And, Anthony Roberts’ sacrifice fly ended the game.

“It was just everybody; again, kept hitting,” Tigers coach Hank DeMello said. “The kids are focused, hungry, and it’s fun to watch, to see what they’re capable of doing.”

Winning pitcher Dalton Blaser “worked ahead in the count,” DeMello said, and walked one and struck out seven.

At Woodcreek, the Timberwolves outhit Nevada Union 11-6 but couldn’t cash in with runners in scoring position and one out in the sixth and seventh innings, taking a called third strike each time. Nevada Union scored four runs in the top of the fourth, and the Timberwolves scored three in the fifth.

“We couldn’t find a way to get anybody in,” Mayo said.