Laker baseball comes up short in home opener
In its first true home game of the season the Laker baseball team struggled with pitching and base management en route to an 11-5 loss to Portola at North Tahoe Regional Park on Wednesday.
North Tahoe head coach Jack Bernardo said that sore arms on all three hurlers contributed to some less than ideal pitching from the Lakers.
Tyler Phillips pitched the first two innings and gave up four runs. Taylor Good threw for the third inning and gave up two runs before Sean Bernardo threw the last three innings and gave up five runs while striking out four batters.
“It’s a case of not playing in two weeks,” coach Bernardo said after the game.
North Tahoe has been on spring break and the team did not schedule games around that time.
Portola’s first run of the game came as many of its following runs did, with an overthrown ball by the Lakers on a stolen base attempt.
Despite such defensive mistakes, North Tahoe kept the game tight, heading into the sixth inning down only 6-4.
An overthrown ball followed by two Portola hits in the top of the sixth extended the Tigers’ lead.
North Tahoe went three-up, three-down in the bottom of the inning, starting with Joe Hallman being thrown out at first on a ball hit to third.
Zack Tomlinson had a rip of a hit snagged by Portola’s shortstop and Tyler Phillips struck out for the third out, sending North Tahoe into the final inning down by five runs.
Despite giving up a deep double followed by a deep RBI single, Bernardo took control back in the top of the closing inning.
Following the first out on a force at second, which allowed Portola’s final run to score, Bernardo struck out the final two batters to shut down the Tiger bats.
Good, North Tahoe’s No. 3 hitter, led off the inning with a long fly ball to center that was easily caught for the first out.
Brian Orr hammered a deep shot that got stuck under the center field fence for an infield triple.
Bernardo then snuck one under the legs of Portola’s shortstop to bring Orr home.
The game ended when Tyler Turpin hit a shot to right field that was caught and then thrown to second base, where Orr was doubled off after not tagging up.
“Well, we didn’t give up,” coach Bernardo said after the game.
Bernardo said that it was good to be playing at home and that the mistakes that led to the loss are ones he hopes can be fixed in practice ” things like not backing up throws.
North Tahoe hosts Whittell at Tahoe Vista on Monday at 3 p.m., then Loyalton two days later, also at home, at 4 p.m.