Strong Pitching Leads Pearl To Win

Bob Cruikshank (University of San Francisco) hit the first Home Run of the 2012 Season for the Pearl on Tuesday Night

With their first victory of the 2012 season out of the way, the Neptune Beach Pearl took on the San Francisco Seals on June 5th to pick up their second straight in a 4-2 win.

            Catcher Alan Baldwin (Hawaii) got the action started in the second inning with an RBI single to take the lead. “Today was actually the first day I kind of saw the ball decently,” Baldwin said. His efforts at the plate clearly paid off as he would again come up with a big play in the sixth inning with an RBI sacrifice fly to add another run. Center fielder Joe Moroney (Kansas) brought in a runner in the fourth with an two-out RBI single and third baseman Bob Cruikshank (University of San Francisco) rounded out the scoring by smacking the first home run of the season in the eighth in what he described as an “aggressive” at-bat. Cruikshank then made a remarkable running throw to first to get the out in the bottom of the inning, showing that the infielder was excelling at both offense and defense. “I knew a speed guy was up so I was just trying to watch his feet and see if he’d bunt,” Cruikshank said.

“He turned a bunt so I just tried to get there on time.” Coach Brant Cummings believes Cruikshank’s home run gave the team a much-needed cushion, particularly after giving up a run in the ninth, to ensure victory.

            “Most importantly for us today in a 4-2 today is we had terrific pitching,” Cummings said. Once again, the quality pitching proved to be a key to the Pearl’s victory. After throwing three solid innings, right-hander Will Anderson (Fresno State) gave up no hits before making way for right-hander Collin Monagle (Sierra College). “My off speed was working pretty well,” Monagle said. “That, with getting ahead in the count, and I was able to put some guys away.” Monagle pitched five innings, picking up five strikeouts along the way.

Right-handed pitcher Jordan Louie (Oregon State) came in to close out the game in the ninth and record the save, in his first pitching appearance in over a year. Baldwin, making his second straight start at catcher, thought the pitchers had a remarkable outing. “Just trying to get my pitchers to throw strikes, do their job and they did a great job, just spot on,” Baldwin said.

            The Pearl improve to 2-1 on the season and 1-0 in Far West League action.  They have another Far West League Contest tomorrow June 6th against the Nor Cal Longhorns at Canada College in Redwood City, CA at 5 pm.



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