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ST. PAUL EASTER BASEBALL TOURNAMENT
By Tom Connolly
The La Mirada baseball team completed the St. Paul Easter Baseball Tournament on an upbeat note with a 2-0 home victory over Santa Fe last Thursday afternoon. Ali Anthony pitched a three-hit shutout and struck out a career-high 12 batters to lead the Matadores, who split their four games during this yearly ritual over Spring Break.
Aside from its victory over the Chiefs, La Mirada (10-10-1) had previously defeated El Segundo while losing to San Pedro and Valencia since Apr. 7. Anthony (4-2) was cruising along and had a no-hitter going until Gilbert Medina doubled to left with two outs in the sixth inning. Anthony then struck out Luis Delgado to end the inning.
The Chiefs mounted a bit of a threat in the seventh. Santa Fe had two on with one out but Anthony retired Bryce Brooks on a fly ball and got Romeo Prado to ground out to end the game.
“I felt good and rested out there and I had all the confidence in my defense,” said Anthony, who struck out the side in the third and sixth innings and was bidding for his first no-hitter. “I started to think about [the no-hitter] in the fifth inning. None of my teammates mentioned anything about the no-hitter during the game until I heard one of the guys say, ‘hey, they don’t have any hits yet’ when I went out to pitch the sixth inning. That kind of jinxed it, but it’s okay. I’m happy with the shutout.”
“Ali was in complete control, he never got rattled and he pitched a heck of a game,” said La Mirada head coach Kim Brooks. “He had command of his three pitches-curve ball, fastball and changeup-and we played good defense behind him and got some clutch hitting. I’m very pleased.”
Santa Fe pitcher Steven Corona also pitched well and went the distance, striking out two and not walking a batter.
With one out in the second, Anthony was hit by a pitch. He stole second and scored on Austin Rojo’s single to left to give the Matadores a 1-0 lead. They went up 2-0 in the fifth after Justin Knight doubled with one out and came home on a single from James Myres.
Santa Fe head coach Pierre Romo was also impressed with Anthony’s performance.
“Ali had his good stuff and he’s tough to beat,” he commented. “He made adjustments and kept making key pitches. Our hitters were getting frustrated.”
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