Greenville’s James Martinez rounds third and gives his coach Mike Chelotti a high five after hitting a homer during the Indians’ game against American Christian on May 7. Greenville ended up losing both games in a double header to the visiting team, yet still advanced to the playoffs as the No. 2 seed. Photo by James Wilson
In its last two games of the regular season, the Greenville baseball team went up against, and lost to, the American Christian Academy on May 7. The Indians hosted the visiting team only to lose 14-1 and 13-3.
The two losses dropped Greenville’s record to 14-9 overall and 12-4 in league. The only other league games Greenville lost this season were against Dunsmuir.
“They hit the ball really well,” commented Greenville’s head baseball coach, Mike Chelotti on American Christian’s offense. “Once they got rolling, we just couldn’t answer.”
Greenville’s season was boosted by two teams forfeiting two weeks ago, which automatically gave the Indians four extra wins. The wins propelled them to the No. 2 seed in the Northern Section Division VI, right below American Christian.
Things looked up for the Indians at the beginning of their first game against American Christian. American Christian was up 1-0 going into the third inning. Donnie Housen pitched for Greenville and held American Christian off pretty well.
At the bottom of the third, with two outs and no one on base, James Martinez knocked the ball past center field and out of the park to tie the game 1-1. Greenville’s energy and spirit were high and the boys seemed ready to take down their opponent.
“I thought, ‘Hey, we’re on our way,’” said Chelotti. “We played equal to or better than American Christian with the exception of three innings out of 12. But when they got rolling, they didn’t stop.”
American Christian came out of the third inning with the mindset to win, however, and rallied for five runs in the fourth inning and eight more in the fifth to end the game early. Greenville scored no more runs.
American Christian kept its momentum going into the second game. In the top of the first, the visiting team scored 10 runs and Greenville never recovered. Greenville scored one run in the second, one in the third and one in the fifth, but was too far behind by that point. American Christian scored two more in the fifth and one in the seventh to end the game.
“Our kids hung in there,” said Chelotti. “Every team we’ve gone up against that was really far behind just gave up. Our players kept fighting until the end.”
Martinez, Andy Fairbanks and Darian Potts all made runs during the game. Housen made the sole RBI for the Indians. Fairbanks started the game off on the mound, until Sam Johnson took over in the fourth to finish the game off.
Greenville played Big Valley on May 14 in the first round of playoffs. Details of the game will be published in the May 22 Sports and Recreation section.
Chester’s baseball team fought a tough battle against Redding Christian on May 7 to eventually lose 9-8. The Volcanoes ended their season 14-8 overall and 10-2 in league play.
Despite its loss to Redding Christian, Chester’s exemplary season rocketed it to the No. 1 seed in the Northern Section Division V playoff brackets.
As the top seed, Chester had a bye during the first round of playoffs. Chester’s first game in the post-season was May 14. Details of the game will be in the May 22 Sports and Recreation section.