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SureWest baseball tourney is a sure thing every year

Oakmont tops local teams with berth in semifinals
By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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Come springtime, some high school sports teams high-tail it out of town, whether it be to see different competition, bond as a team or both.

The annual Gina Montes/SureWest Easter Invitational offers stiff competition right here in Roseville. There are 16 teams — among the best in the area — competing in four divisions with Tuesday’s semifinal winners and losers playing Wednesday at Raley Field for third place (at 4 p.m.) and the championship (7 p.m.).

“It’s well run and on good facilities,” said Dean Perkins, whose Oakmont Vikings earned the No. 1 seed in the blue bracket and a semifinal berth following two victories Monday. “These are teams you can count on every year … to bring quality teams and give you good games.”

Oakmont (6-3) scored nine unearned runs in an 11-5 victory over Valley Christian (2-4) on Monday morning and followed with an impressive 3-1 win over Woodcreek (8-1).

Austin Call and Ryan Gearing combined to scatter six hits and strike out nine without allowing a walk. Call struck out five in five innings, and Gearing struck out the side in the seventh for the save.

“We played very good defense, kept the ball in front,” Perkins said. “We had some good at-bats at the plate against a very good pitcher.”

The Vikings made the most of their three hits against Woodcreek junior Tyler Milani, including a run-scoring single by Logan Coggeshall in the bottom of the second and Cody Baron’s single that started a two-run fourth.

Woodcreek settled for the No. 2 seed in the blue bracket. El Camino was third and Valley Christian fourth.

The Timberwolves defeated El Camino 11-2 Monday morning as Shaun Mize had three hits, including a triple, and three RBI.

Roseville lost to Sheldon 11-6 and Vista del Lago 8-2 on Monday and ended up as the No. 3 seed in the orange bracket.

The Tigers (2-6) issued 11 walks and hit two batters against Sheldon and in the afternoon left runners stranded at second third in the first inning against Vista del Lago.

“We’re not playing smart baseball right now,” Roseville coach Hank DeMello said. “It’s the little things, like knowing what to do in situations and how long it takes to get warm in the bullpen and how long it takes to get down there. Those little things come together and make one big thing.”

For Valley Christian, Teagan Mowry homered in the loss to Oakmont. The Lions later lost to El Camino 4-2 in nine innings.