Stephen Collins struck out eight batters and scattered five hits in a six-inning gem to lead the St. Helena High varsity baseball team to its first win of the year at Healdsburg Tuesday, 7-3.
He allowed two unearned runs and walked two batters in the 90-pitch outing.
Despite being out-hit by the Greyhounds, 7-4, the Saints (1-4) capitalized on five errors and multiple miscues to build their lead. With a 2-1 advantage in the fifth inning, the Saints loaded the bases with two outs and showed some patience at the plate as Caleb Jeske (2 for 3, two RBIs, run, walk) and Casey Walker (three RBIs, two walks) earned back-to-back RBI walks to increase their lead to 4-1.
In the next inning the visitors earned some breathing room. Luis Robledo (1 for 4, RBI, run) forced an error on a hard ground ball that scored Caleb Granados, who also reached on an error to open the frame. Later in the inning, an RBI single from Jeske and another bases-loaded walk by Walker opened a 7-1 edge for the Saints.
Jeske worked his way out of a lengthy seventh inning of relief, surrendering one run on two hits, walked one and struck out two to seal the win.
Jack Adkins, in his first game back from injury, went 1 for 2 with two runs and walked twice. Collins and Randall Mosley both scored a run, and Alex Kerr recorded a sacrifice RBI in the first frame.
El Molino 11, St. Helena 1, five innings
In Saturday’s loss at home, Jeske, the Saints’ starting pitcher, was tagged for nine runs (seven earned). In the fourth frame, the Lions strung together five consecutive hits to open a 7-0 lead and chased the sophomore after 3 1/3 innings. He allowed seven hits, walked two and struck out two in his second start of the season.
Robledo pitched an inning of relief for the Saints, surrendering two runs on one hit, hit two batters and notched one strikeout. Granados got the final two outs of the contest in six pitches.
With an early end to the contest looming, the Saints avoided the shutout with a run in the bottom of the fifth. Back-to-back hits by Mosley (2 for 2, steal) and Kerr (2 for 2, run) started the rally, but the home team was only able to score Kerr on a two-out, RBI single from Collins (1 for 3, RBI). On that play, Carlos Acuna, who reached on a fielder’s choice, was called out at home plate to end the game.
Mosley and Kerr went back-to-back in the second inning too, putting runners on the corners, but neither player was able to score.
St. Helena had six hits and committed four errors. Jeske went 1 for 3, and Robledo and Alexis Velasco both earned a walk.
El Molino 14, St. Helena 5
The Saints moved to 1-1 on the season, unable to recover from an 8-run second inning by the hosting Lions Tuesday in Forestville.
St. Helena scored two runs in the second and three in the fifth.
Individual statistics were unavailable at print deadline.
St. Helena 9, Healdsburg 3
The Saints (2-2) put on an offensive clinic on the road Tuesday, rallying from an early 2-0 deficit and scoring in each of the last five innings to cruise to a comfortable victory.
In the 11-hit performance, every player in the St. Helena lineup showed up in the box score, led by Sam Coltrin (3 for 5, two RBIs, run) and Stacey Nelson (3 for 4, three runs, RBI.
Liam Gilson and Javin Yorgensen both finished 1 for 3 with a walk and steal. Jackson Dena was 1 for 4 with a walk, a run and a steal. Emmet Bowen went 1 for 5 with a run, Jonathan Gamble was 1 for 4 with an RBI, Gabe Cornejo scored twice and recorded an RBI, and Conlan Harrington had a run and an RBI.
Coltrin was the Saints starting pitcher. He tossed 66 pitches over four innings and gave up three runs on four hits, one walk and struck out five. Nelson pitched three shutout innings to seal the win, allowing one hit, one walk and fanned five batters.
El Molino 5, St. Helena 2
The Saints stranded at least one baserunner in all but three innings Saturday, unable to recover from the visiting Lions’ four-run rally in the opening frame.
However, they broke through in the seventh, earning two runs in a bases-loaded sequence. Gamble (1 for 3, double, run, two steals), who reached on a walk, stole third base and home plate to put the Saints’ first run on the scoreboard. Then Harrington (1 for 3, run, two steals) scored in the same fashion before Bowen struck out to end it.
Dena, St. Helena’s starting pitcher, was pulled after just one out, tossing five strikes in 20 pitches. He allowed three runs, walked three and struck out one batter. Coltrin and Gamble teamed up for a two-run effort over the remainder of the game. Coltrin surrendered one unearned run on two hits and struck out four in 32⁄3 innings of work; Gamble went three innings, allowed four hits and one run.
The Saints out-hit the Lions 7-6 but committed two errors. Dena was 1 for 4 with a steal, Bowen 1 for 4, Nelson was 1 for 2 with a walk, Cornejo went 1 for 3, and Yorgensen 1 for 3 with a steal.
Two PUC players earn NAIA Champions of Character awards
Gabriela Lua and Noel Briones are the recipients of the NAIA Champions of Character award for Pacific Union College basketball, PUC and the California Pacific Conference announced last week.
Lua is a 5-foot-7 sophomore guard on the women’s team and went to Rio Lindo Adventist Academy in Healdsburg. Lua is from Sacramento.
“Throughout the season, Lua has exhibited integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership, and has personified the spirit of both Pioneers athletics and Pacific Union College as a whole,” PUC said on its website.
Briones is a 6-foot senior guard-forward for the Pioneers and is from Hayward. Briones previously attended Chabot College-Hayward.
“I am so proud of Noel and cannot think of a better person to represent PUC and our men’s basketball program with this award. He really is the perfect example of our Champions of Character values and has been such an important piece for us in establishing our standards as a program over these past two seasons,” Pioneers head coach Greg Rahn said on the PUC website.