Steven Zobac, a senior headed to Cal, came into the game with a 0.24 ERA and lowered it with six shutout innings, walking none and striking out eight. William Kempner, a senior headed to Gonzaga, pitched a 1-2-3 seventh. It was the 13th shutout of the season for Valley Christian (27-4).
"They're the number one team for a reason,'' Palo Alto coach Pete Fukuhara said. "They're a good team, top to bottom. I liked our chances, but we kicked the ball around. We'll be back.''
It's easy to see why Fukuhara would think so. Palo Alto has qualified for the CCS Open Division playoffs in all five years he has been head coach. And this current team, which finished 20-10, was extremely young with a whole bunch of sophomores playing key roles.
Darby and Berger hit first and second in the batting order. Ritter Amsbaugh was the starting third baseman and Matthew Caren the DH. Left-hander Ryan Harvey pitched an inning in relief. In all there were 12 sophomores and four juniors on the roster.
But it was also the last game for a talented group of seniors, led by Oregon-commit Josh Kasevich, who gave up three runs over the first two innings -- one earned -- and then settled down and matched zeros with Zobac, a future Pac-12 rival when Cal plays Oregon.
"It's tough for it to be over,'' Kasevich said. "I love this team. We had a heck of a year. I'll miss it.''
It was also the last game for first baseman Kyle Mostofizadeh, right fielder Tyler Foug, left fielder Hyunwoo Roh and center fielder Paul Thie.
This story contains 356 words.
Stories older than 90 days are available only to subscribing members. Please help sustain quality local journalism by becoming a subscribing member today.
If you are already a subscriber, please log in so you can continue to enjoy unlimited access to stories and archives. Subscriptions start at $5 per month and may be cancelled at any time.