Thursday, June 17, 2021

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Pitching and power lift Colusa over East Nic, Orland

Colusa’s Emanuel Frias is congratulated by teammates Daniel O’Sullivan and Luke Kalfsbeek after Frias hit a two-run home run in the RedHawks’ 7-3 win over East Nicolaus on May 25.

It has been a remarkable year for the RedHawk baseball team who have seen all aspects of the game come together.

The team has compiled a 25-1 record after taking a double header, 7-3 and 14-0, from visiting East Nicolaus on May 25, and then shutting out Orland 10-0 on the road May 27.

In the first game of the twin bill, Colusa found itself down 3-1 and without a hit heading into the bottom of the fifth inning, as the RedHawks saw four of the first five batters walk to start the frame and chase starting pitcher Jacob Cleary, who had stifled them at the plate to that point.

After a pitching change, a rattled East Nic team, which has only one senior and five underclassmen in the starting lineup, made two errors, allowing three more runs to score and give Colusa its first lead of the game, 5-3.

Yet, that wasn’t all for the RedHawks in that inning. Their leading hitter this season, Emanuel Frias, who is averaging .450 with 44 RBI, launched a moon shot to left field that was good for two more runs and proved to be the backbreaker for the Spartans.

Justin Lee recorded the only other hit for Colusa, which was the beneficiary of eight walks in the game.

As it has been all season, pitching was paramount with Drew Bradbury on the hill, going six and two-thirds innings, scattering six hits and striking out five, while working around five RedHawk errors before exiting after throwing 111 pitches.

Ethan Lay, who has a miniscule .32 ERA this season, then took over to retire the final batter.

Colusa maintained its momentum in the nightcap, pounding out 19 hits, highlighted by Lay’s two-run bomb that was part of a nine run first inning outburst.

At the plate Lay finished 3 for 3 with four RBI while Frias also went 3 for 3 and drove in a pair of runs.

Bradbury, Lee, Edgar Garcia, and Luke Kalfsbeek each had two hits in the run-rule shortened win in which 11 RedHawks recorded a hit.

Frias, Tyler Oliver, and Lay combined on the mound to shutout the Spartans.

To conclude the week, Colusa posted its ninth shutout of the season and second-in-a-row blanking the Trojans in Orland.

Lay continued to swing a hot bat as he again was a perfect 3 for 3 in addition to putting in five and two-thirds innings of work on the mound – where he fanned eight and yielded just two hits, before giving way to Kalfsbeek, who induced the last out.

Colusa had two games on the docket this week, finishing their season with a series against winless Live Oak Tuesday, on the road, and Wednesday at home. ▪

 

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