Bucs Strike Gold in Season Opener
The GCCL Bucs held their first game of the 2022 summer season against L.A. Mission Wednesday, battling to a 9-6 victory. The offense fired on all cylinders, putting up 11 hits and walking six times as a team.
Right-handed starter Ryder Edwards took the hill for his first start of the summer. After a shaky first inning, Edwards settled down to retire the side in order the following inning, before exiting in the third inning. Edwards finished his outing with a line of 2.2IP, 4H, 3R, 1ER, 2BB, 2K.
Relieving Edwards was the 6’7” right-hander Logan Tourville, who immediately helped his team get out of a first-and-third jam to finish off the third. 3.3 innings of relief, Tourville held his opponents to only one hit and one earned run, while also walking a single batter. With his efforts, Tourville held Mission to just five hits over six innings, after they connected for four hits over the first three innings.
In the top of the seventh inning, Justin Pauly came on to relieve Tourville, and was able to work around the entirety of Mission’s offense in his two innings of relief. Despite giving up two earned runs in two innings and walking five batters, Pauly was able to escape the eighth inning with men on the corners, while also holding his team’s lead to two runs. After the Bucs scored their final run of the night in the bottom half of the eighth inning, right-hander Camilo De La Barcena came on to shut the door. Barcena needed 17 pitches to notch his first save, only giving up a hit and a walk in his season debut on the mound.
The offense led the way after the first two innings, and found second wind with an RBI groundout by outfielder Chase Kriger in the bottom of the fifth to reclaim the lead 5-4. From that point on, the Bucs did not look back, grabbing an additional four runs in the last two innings to cement their victory.
Shortstop Evan Kang had himself a day, going 4-5 while driving in and scoring two runs, and adding a stolen base. “I think games like this just help the team really come together, and it’s always nice to do well and see your teammates rallying behind you,” said Kang.
Other key offensive contributors included first baseman Eddie Tejeda, who connected for two hits in four at bats, while driving in and scoring a run. Second baseman Maximo Garcia totaled two hits in four at bats, while designated hitter Alex Howard put up a hit in two at bats, while walking and scoring twice.
The Bucs play their next game Sunday against the PFA Braves at Carson High School in Carson, CA. This will be the first game of a doubleheader, with the first pitch scheduled for 11 a.m.