4/08: The Giants had hoped to head into spring break with an undefeated MCAL record with only two losses on the year. The San Marin Mustangs had other plans. San Marin handed Redwood one of their three losses last year and now is the only team in the MCAL to have a winning record against Redwood (2-1) in Mike Firenzi’s reign as Head Coach after defeating the Giants at Moody Field, 3-2 on Friday.
San Marin came out swinging, scoring two runs in the top of the first after a couple of Giants errors, a base hit, and a botched double-play. However, with runners on first and third and two outs, the Mustangs attempted to steal second but catcher Parker Laret ended the San Marin assault by firing a laser to Pascal Brassey who dropped the tag to record the final out of an ugly inning, leaving the Giants down 2-0. Both of San Marin’s runs were unearned.
Aubrey Sine led off the bottom of the second inning with a deep fly to left that planted the San Marin left fielder into one of the banners that hang from the outfield walls at Moody. Henry Zeisler sent Sine to third with a hard grounder through the hole between first and second. With runners on first and third, Zach Cohen squared to bunt and with Zeisler running from first on the pitch, San Marin was out of position and Sine scored from third when the throw from the Mustang catcher sailed into center field, putting the Giants in striking distance, 2-1 after two innings.
After starting pitcher Zach Cohen shut down San Marin in the top of the third, Zack Kopstein led off the bottom of the inning with a single to left. Josh Cohen bunted him to second, setting the table for Nicolas Belgum. “Nickie Clutch” singled singled to center, scoring Kopstein and tying the score 2-2.
The score remained the same until the top of the sixth when San Marin duplicated the Giants efforts from the third inning. A base hit, followed by a sacrifice bunt that was followed by a single to center that scored the runner from second put the Mustangs up, 3-2. Aubrey Sine led off the bottom of the inning with a single. Zeisler ended his at-bat at second base after an errant throw on a double-play attempt. After a passed ball sent Zeisler to third, the tying run would walk into the Giants dugout after a ground ball to first ended the inning. The Giants left thirteen runners on base on the day.
Josh Cohen got the call from the bullpen and held San Marin scoreless in the top of the seventh. The other
‘Nic’, Nic Gillies lead off the bottom of the seventh with a single to left. Kopstein bunted him over, putting the tying run on second. Josh Cohen hit a tough grounder to short, advancing Gillies to third and after beating the throw, the Giants now had runners on first and third with one out. Firenzi called for the same play that scored the Giants run in the bottom of the second. However, Cohen was erased as he was picked off and a hard tag at second left him with a mild concussion and out for the game. A hard ground ball to short and a close play at first ended the game, as Gillies crossed the plate and Giants fans debated if the runner was safe at first on a close play.
“We are playing hard, this is our second one in a row that we have had a player go to the hospital after the game.”, Firenzi said. Senior leader, shortstop Danny Avins had his season end at Marin Catholic after dislocating his shoulder on a hard slide at second. Danny continues to attend every practice and every game and continues to provide support to his teammates. Cohen has been cleared to play.
Zach Cohen took the loss, despite giving up only one earned run and striking out three. Josh Cohen, Nic Gillies and Zach Kopstein each had a hit with Nicolas Belgum, Aubrey Sine and Henry Zeilser each adding two hits apiece to the Giants total.
The Giants host Justin-Sienna at Moody field on Tuesday. Justin is 3-5 in league play but two of their three wins have come against Marin Catholic and Drake.