ANAHEIM — Compared to the beginning of last season's CIF Southern Section Division 4 baseball playoffs, Estancia High made a nice improvement, playing in the first round this season as opposed to the wild-card round.
But unlike last season's team, which won, 5-3, at Anaheim High, the Eagles ran into a buzzsaw known as Savanna left-handed senior starting pitcher Ryan Hartman, in a 7-0 loss Thursday at Savanna.
Hartman (10-2) used his high fastball and sharp, breaking curve on his way to allowing just two hits in six innings, striking out six, as the Rebels won their ninth straight game. Savanna advanced to play in Tuesday's second-round game against Nogales, a 3-0 winner over St. Paul, with a coin flip today deciding who will host that game.
Estancia came close to scoring the game's first run right away, in the top of the first inning. Junior Tyler Rios walked, stole second, then Alex Trancoso struck out on a full count for the second out in the inning. Another junior, Steven Macias, hit a hard grounder to second, but Nick Murillo made a nice diving stab and threw him out to end the threat.