The San Benito Bath Ruth 14-year-old All-Star team is one win away from clinching a second-straight state title, after starting the Central California state tournament with three-consecutive victories.
The weekend started with a 10-inning victory over host-city Arroyo Grande on Friday. The game was so long – nearly four hours – it extended into a second day because of the city’s curfew.
Adrian Gonzales started for San Benito and went 2 and 1-3 inning and allowed three unearned runs. Vinnie Parker kept the game close for San Benito by throwing nearly five innings of shut out baseball. David Werolin, who got the win, pitched the final two innings.
San Benito won in the top of the 10th inning when, with two outs, John Barrientos walked and scored on a wild pitch.
Afterward, San Benito defeated Lompoc and Reedley by identical 3-1 scores.
Against Lompoc, San Benito entered the final inning tied at 1-1 thanks to great pitching from Gonzales and Werolin.
In the bottom of the sixth, Werolin and Jackson Starke led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Jacob Penzo then entered the game and smacked a triple to score both runs.
Against Reedley, Parker threw all seven innings and San Benito once again won late. With the win, San Benito will play Tuesday in Arroyo Grande for the state championship.
13 Babe Ruth
Despite hosting the 13-year-old state tournament, the San Benito All-Stars could only grab one win as they were overpowered in two losses.
San Benito opened the tournament on Friday with a 3-2 win on a walk-off bunt single from Gehrig Mendez. Zack Walker, who walked, stole second and third before scoring on a bad throw to first on the bunt. The win, though, was the only high moment of the weekend for San Benito.
The San Benito bats struggled losing to Central Coast 15-5 and Santa Maria 12-2.