Capital Christian Bounces Cordova Lancers from Playoffs
Lancers Baseball Bounced from Playoffs
RANCHO CORDOVA, CA (MPG) - Having won six of their final seven regular season games to earn a spot in the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs, the Cordova Lancers varsity baseball team had built up a ton of momentum.
But as the young No. 13 seed Lancers learned Tuesday at Capital Christian High School, momentum can only take you so far, as they lost 20-0 in their first round postseason matchup against the No. 4 seed Cougars.
Any momentum the team thought they had carried over was quickly dismissed, as Capital Christian ripped off eight runs in the bottom of the first inning. After surrendering five runs, starting pitcher Dylan Murphy was replaced by reliever Matthew Jernigan, who then allowed three more before the Lancers could even get a sip of Gatorade.
The Cougars (18-8 overall) would add 11 more runs in the bottom of the second inning, as well as a deep solo home run by outfielder Jamison Smith in the bottom of the fourth inning to cap off the scoring barrage, resulting in the game being called after the top of the fifth inning due to the CIF's 10-run mercy rule.
Even so, Lancers (9-13 overall) head coach Doug Hughes was proud of the way his team continued to compete despite the game being out of hand early on. "My kids don't quit," he said. "They absolutely don't quit. We started six freshmen in this game, and for them not to quit against a team that has 12 seniors, I couldn't ask any more of them."
That senior-laden Cougars team also had one distinct Cordova connection, as former longtime Lancers head coach Guy Anderson is on the Capital Christian staff as an assistant coach. Anderson, who spent 45 years at the helm of the baseball program at Cordova, was candid when discussing facing his former team for the first time since he was relieved of his duties as head coach in 2015.
"I was a little nervous coming in," Anderson said. "It was hard for me to see them (Cordova) get beat like that," he added.
Capital Christian was led by senior Kenyon Bower, who tallied six RBI on three hits offensively. From the mound, three pitchers allowed just one hit by Cordova.
Despite the lopsided defeat, Hughes feels it will present quite the learning experience for his young club going forward. As he put it, both he and the team are already chomping at the bit to bounce back.
"I think this game is going to be absolutely huge," he said regarding learning from their mistakes and improving in all areas of play. "They want next year to start right now."