SHINGLE SPRINGS — In a season of disappointing losses — some just because the breaks didn’t go Ponderosa’s way and some because the Bruins couldn’t come up with the big hit it needed, the big play, or the key strikeout — Tuesday’s 8-3 win over Folsom just plain felt good for the Ponderosa baseball team.
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“We’ve battled this year, but we’ve lost a couple heartbreakers,” Bruin coach Dave White said. “We’ve been hitting, and pitching-wise we’re doing OK, but routine plays haven’t come easy and there were times we just couldn’t score the big run we needed.
“We would give up a lot of runs early and then not be able to come back. But I tell the kids we’re battling for pride now — we’ll finish the season playing hard. That’s what’s important.”
Sitting in fourth place in the Delta River League standings, three games back of third-place Pleasant Grove, the Bruins are playing for pride and taking a win from Folsom atoned for a 4-3 loss to the Bulldogs at the beginning of the season — the only DRL game Folsom won.
And Tuesday the Bruins got the big hit they needed. Tyler Evanoff’s three-run homer in the second to break a 1-1 tie had Folsom center-fielder Dano Graves scrambling deep into the Bruins’ softball infield before he could corral the ball. That turned out to be all the runs Ponderosa needed, but Zach Jones’ two-run dinger over the left-field fence in the fourth made it 7-2, and Nick Perata, who was hit by a pitch in the same inning, scored the Bruins’ eighth run on Jerrod Bravo’s towering triple — that again had Graves on the run.
And the Bruins got great pitching from Andrew Lee, who went four solid innings, giving up one earned run on the only battter he walked, allowing no hits and striking out five. Dom Campodonico came on in the fifth and retired the side in order, but he ran into trouble in the sixth with a hit batter, a base hit and two errors. One run scored before Campodonico fanned a batter, Alex Lytle caught a fly in left, and Bravo made an unassisted out at third, leaving three Bulldogs stranded.
Tyler Long homered in the seventh to account for the only other Folsom run. After Ponderosa scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the first on hits from Evanoff and Bravo, Folsom tied it in the second.
Cody Isham, who is usually behind the plate, started for Folsom and gave up all eight runs — all earned — before Ryan Snyder came in with one down in the fourth and got out of the inning. Jake Brandt took over the last two innings and with help from a double play that erased Matt Poulin and Jones in the fifth, Brandt held the Bruins for the remainder of the game.
Evanoff was 2-for-4 with three RBIs; Bravo was 2-for-4 with an RBI; Jones was 1-for-3 with two RBIs; and Dylan Duhamel, Blake Yaeger, Poulin and Troy Booher all singled for Ponderosa.
The Bruins wrap up the season series with Folsom Thursday and have two games next week to close out the schedule.