5/06: The Redwood Giants took sole possession of first place with a victory against their cross-town rival, Marin Catholic at Moody Field by their largest margin in their last five games, 4-1. This was the fifth time Coach Firenzi has faced off against the program where he spent his first twenty years as a Head Coach, and the Giants walked away with their fifth straight win. “It was a good win, they are a good team” Firenzi said after the game. When reminded that this is his fifth consecutive win he said, “I’m happy every time we win, but each one puts the odds in their favor for the next one.”
The Wildcats came out swinging and scored a run in the top of the first after starting pitcher Zack Kopstein recorded two quick outs but walked the Wildcats third hitter. The two-out walk was followed by back-to-back singles that put MC up 1-0 going into the bottom of the first. “Two-out walks”, Assistant Coach Tim Grayson said, shaking his head.
The Giants answered in the bottom of the inning after Henry Zeisler doubled and Erik Doctor knocked him in on a hard grounder to the right side.The score remained 1-1 until the bottom of the third inning when the Wildcat defense unraveled as they did in their first match-up of the year, giving up a three-run rally that was sparked by Nicolas Belgum who reached first on an error by the second baseman. Belgum promptly stole second and advanced to third when Henry Zeisler hit a grounder to short that was bobbled, recording the second Wildcat error of the inning. Erik Doctor walked, loading the bases with just one out for clean-up hitter Aubrey Sine. Sine watched a 2-0 curveball travel to the backstop and Belgum crossed the plate. An errant throw from the catcher to starting pitcher Brandon Buckley, covering the plate, sent the ball to the middle of the infield and a hustling Henry Zeisler scored from second, putting the Giants up 3-1. Buckley came back strong and struck out Sine but Zach Cohen picked up his teammate , sending a 0-1 fastball to left, scoring Erik Doctor and putting the Giants up for good, 4-1.
Zach Kopstein earned his third complete-game victory of the year, taking his season record to 8-1 and his MCAL record to a League Leading 6-0. Kopstein struck out five while yielding just one run, dropping his league ERA to 1.14.
Kopstein helped his own cause, adding a hit to the Giants total, with Zeisler, Doctor, Nic Gillies, Zach Cohen, and Josh Cohen adding to the fray. Zach Cohen and Erik Doctor had the lone RBI’s on the day.
The Giants travel to San Marin on Tuesday with hopes to avenge their loss earlier in the year and hold on to first place in the MCAL race. Zach Cohen will get the start for Redwood and San Marin will likely answer with Nicholas Corbani, the left-hander who earned the victory in their first match-up.