Behind strong pitching from Mikey Bender, Tommy Quanstrom and Ben Cohen, the freshman Giants shut out Bishop O’Dowd 7-0 on Monday afternoon at Endriss Field. The Giants are now 2-0 on the year.
Bender started and was dominant in his five innings, striking out seven while walking only one. Bender located well with his fastball and curveball for his entire outing and had O’Dowd’s hitters continually off balance. Not to be outdone, Quanstrom relieved Bender in the sixth inning and struck out the side. Cohen worked a quiet seventh inning to finish it off.
O’Dowd countered with a tough starter of their own, lefty Tristan Perri. The Giants broke through with an unearned run in the bottom of the second, with Jake Zesiger scoring on Quanstrom’s well placed popup single into no man’s land out of reach of O’Dowd’s converging shortstop, center fielder and left fielder.
In the bottom of the fourth, Zesiger led off with a walk. Thomas Johnson pinch-ran for Zesiger and stole second. After a walk to Bender, Johnson and Nathan Hirsch, who had run for Bender, advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. Quanstrom then lined a single up the middle to score Johnson, with Hirsch holding at third. Hirsch then scored on a well executed squeeze play with Charlie Ginsburg getting the bunt down. At the end of four, it was 3-0 Giants.
The Giants broke it open in the bottom the sixth. Parker McMillan led off the inning and was hit by the pitch. Following a walk to Bender and a single to right by Asher Jacobs, with two outs Cohen came up with a clutch double into the left-center gap to clear the bases. Pinch hitter Dillon Jensen concluded the day’s scoring with a grounder that was misplayed by O’Dowd’s shortstop, allowing Cohen to cross the plate for the Giants’ seventh run.
Next up for the Giants is Petaluma on Tuesday, March 6, followed by Monte Vista on Thursday, March 8. Both games are at 3:30 PM at Endriss Field.