California takes Eugene out 15-4

California's Landon Mouse rips a double in the fourth inning of the varsity game Monday night at the California Sports Complex. Mouse was ultimately driven home via a double by Zach Holliday to put the Pintos on top 1-0. California went on to defeat Russellville 2-1.

California's Landon Mouse rips a double in the fourth inning of the varsity game Monday night at the California Sports Complex. Mouse was ultimately driven home via a double by Zach Holliday to put the Pintos on top 1-0. California went on to defeat Russellville 2-1. Photo by April Arnett.

The California High School varsity baseball team opened the 2014 season with a home game against Eugene March 24 at the California Sports Complex, where the Pintos' hot bats proved to be too much for the Eagles and California captured a 15-4 win in six innings.

"The boys were kind of tight starting out, but once they settled down, they played loose and had a lot of fun," California Coach Jason Gatlin said. "And this was definitely the first game I've ever played when it was snowing!"

Eugene started off with a one-run first inning. The Pintos countered with four runs, thanks to a triple by JT Trachsel that drove two home, followed by a homerun by Bret Volmert that added two more runs to give the Pintos a 4-1 edge.

The Eagles scored two in the second inning to trail 4-3, then evened the score at 4-4 with one run in the fourth. California added two runs in the fifth inning via another homerun and RBI by Volmert, and the Pintos led 6-4.

While the Eagles struggled to score in the final innings, the sixth inning sealed the deal for the Pintos as they drove nine runs home to secure the win, 15-4.

Volmert led California hits with two homeruns, a double and six RBI. Jaden Barr and JT Trachsel each contributed a triple, a single and two RBI. Drew Norton had a triple and two RBI, Landon Mouse had a double and RBI, and Burke Brant had a single and RBI.

"I think the top half of our lineup is probably one of the best in our conference," Gatlin said.

Brant pitched the first four innings for California and recorded one strikeout. Barr pitched the remaining two innings.

"Jaden didn't give up any hits or earned runs," Gatlin said. "Our team played great defense."

Gatlin added, "I know this was just our first game, but we're looking forward to a great season."

The Pintos had a total of 11 stolen bases.

The Pintos traveled to Mexico Saturday, where they defeated the Bulldogs 7-6, then played a bonus game against Eldon, losing 7-4.

"We played back-to-back games against two competitive teams," Gatlin said. "Zach Holliday threw a great game, going 6 2/3 innings, with J.T. Trachsel coming in for the save."

Holliday recorded five strikeouts.

After one inning against Mexico, California led 6-2. The Bulldogs added one run in the fourth inning to trail 6-3. Mexico scored two runs in the sixth to trail 6-5. A one-run seventh inning for both teams left the win with the Pintos, 7-6.

Volmert led California hits with two and Randy Allee had two RBI.

"The second game against Eldon started out great with four runs in the first inning," Gatlin said "We just couldn't keep our bats going."

While the Pintos led 4-0 through the second inning, the Mustangs added one run in the third inning, two in the fourth and three in the fifth to take over the lead 6-4. Eldon scored one run in the sixth and after a scoreless seventh inning for both teams, the Mustangs took the win, 7-4.

California hosted Russellville Monday night at the California Sports Complex, where the Pintos defeated the Indians 2-1. Russellville won the JV game 7-5.

The Pintos will play South Callaway at 5 p.m. Thursday at Mokane.

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