The Palo Alto and Sacred Heart Prep baseball teams will play for tournament playoff championships on Friday while looking for solid tune-ups for next week's Central Coast Section playoffs.
Sacred Heart Prep posted a 4-3 victory over PAL Bay Division co-champ Carlmont in the Peninsula Athletic League Tournament semifinals on Thursday, earning a date with Capuchino for the title on Friday at Half Moon Bay at 4 p.m.
Palo Alto, meanwhile, forced a third game in the SCVAL De Anza Division championship series with regular-season champ Los Gatos following a 6-0 triumph Thursday on the Vikings' field. Paly will travel to Los Gatos on Friday (4 p.m.) for the deciding game.
Palo Alto (22-5-1) grabbed a 1-0 lead in the second after Justin Hull walked, Max Jung-Goldberg was hit by a pitch and Alec Olmstead was safe on an error. Hull ended up scoring on a wild pitch.
In the third, the Vikings put up three more runs to take a 4-0 lead. Ethan Stern led off with a single and advanced to third before Owen Plambeck singled him home. Justin Hull followed with a double before Jung-Goldberg delivered a two-run double to score Plambeck and Hull.
Hull led off the fifth and was safe on an error before stealing second and taking third on a balk. Lawrence Han drove in Hull with a double. In the sixth, Riley Schoeben singled with one out and eventually scored on a wild pitch.
The six runs were more than enough for Olmstead, who allowed just three hits over five innings. He struck out six and walked four. Niko Lillios finished up with two more scoreless innings, allowing a single hit.
In Belmont, Sacred Heart Prep won its second straight game in as many days to reach the finals against Capuchino, which eliminated Woodside, 4-3. Friday's title game matches teams that finished third (SHP) and fourth (Cap) in the Bay Division this season.
The Gators scored the winning run in the second when Andrew Daschbach singled home Nick O'Donnell. Daschbach finished with three hits. SHP now has won six of its past eight games.
SHP put up three runs in the first. Daschbach led off with a double and John McGrory walked (with Ryan Friere coming into run for him). Daschbach advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Brendan Semien. With Justin Harmon at the plate, Friere stole third and Semien took second. A groundout by Harmon scored Friere. Michael York followed with a single to score Semien.
York picked up the victory while allowing seven hits and two runs over four innings. O'Donnell tossed three solid innings of relief, allowing two hits.