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Sailors stung by Oilers

High School Baseball

Newport Harbor struggles with runners in scoring position and loses to Huntington Beach, 3-0.

April 08, 2014|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza
  • Huntington Beach High catcher Tyler Murray (11) tags out Newport Harbor's Keith Marshall completing a triple play to close out the fourth inning in a Sunset League game on Tuesday.
Huntington Beach High catcher Tyler Murray (11) tags… (KEVIN CHANG, Daily…)

There was a buzz at Newport Harbor High on Tuesday. The bees swarming the visiting dugout in the top of the fifth inning didn't create all of it.

All the rage was the triple play Huntington Beach turned in the bottom of the fourth, helping the Oilers dodge yet another offensive threat. In the next inning, bees forced all the Oilers to drop to the ground in the dugout, and the batter on deck and the one in the batter's box.

The bees appeared to have posed more of a hindrance to the Oilers than the Sailors did. No one on the Oilers' side got stung, just the Sailors when it came to their inability to produce with runners in scoring position.

The Sailors doubled the Oilers' hit total of four, but Huntington Beach didn't need much in the way of offense to win, 3-0, and stay undefeated in Sunset League play.

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Three pitchers — Sean O'Toole, Hagen Danner and Logan Pouelsen — combined for an eight-hit shutout to keep Huntington Beach (11-2, 6-0 in league) in first place. O'Toole, the starter, is the right-hander who got out of the jams during his five-inning stint.

The Sailors' hitting woes with runners on kept them from improving to .500 in league and wasted what Newport Harbor Coach Evan Chalmers called Shaun Vetrovec's best outing on the mound this season. They collected eight hits, none to bring home anyone. Vetrovec (4-2), who in seven innings struck out nine and allowed four hits, one for a solo home run to Tyler Murray in the sixth inning, and one walk, stood no chance to win.

"We had our worst at-bats with runners in scoring position," said Chalmers, whose best hitters proved to be Vetrovec and Connor Seabold, each had two hits. "We're close, but somebody has to have the courage to be able to bash the [the ball] with runners in scoring position. We set the tables plenty of times today and just came up empty there."

Newport Harbor (8-5, 2-4) stranded a runner on second base in the first inning, and then runners on third and second in each of the second, third and fifth innings. All hurt, none as much as the time the Sailors appeared in business in the fourth inning against the top-ranked team in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 poll.

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