Aaron Tolentino | Sports editor | March 29, 2018
A five-run seventh inning was not enough to complete the comeback for Diablo Valley College baseball as they took the loss against Santa Rosa Junior College by a final score of 11-7 Thursday afternoon in Pleasant Hill.
The third and fourth innings hurt the Vikings the most when their pitching staff allowed nine runs during that span. Starting pitcher Mike Manley was knocked out in the third inning, giving up six earned runs and eight hits.
"Manley, during the season, he's usually had good stuff but just today, he looked a little flat just didn't have his best stuff," said catcher Jared Bannister.
Bannister caught a Vikings pitching staff that struggled all afternoon. Pitching dug the team into a big hole early and proved to be too much of a deficit to overcome.
DVC head coach Steve Ward has made a recurring theme for his team all year, they will score runs.
"If we pitch halfway decent, we'll win it," said Ward. "If we don't, we're gonna lose. We can hit and score runs and play pretty good defense, we just gotta be able to pitch."
The game's outcome was simple. The Vikings were not able to pitch today and that resulted in their loss. Scoring seven runs will win a team a good amount of games, but giving up 11 won't.
The lead was as big as 11-2 for Santa Rosa, but the Vikings made a statement in the seventh inning that they were not giving up.
"We never really lose confidence, even when we're down so many runs, we always got that fight," said Bannister. "We always got a chance, regardless of the situation. I can see it. Everybody was fighting like we weren't gonna go down without a fight."
However, the momentous five-run seventh was not enough to complete the comeback for the Vikings. DVC players were still encouraged by the fight they put up and hope to use that positive energy into their rubber match, which they have split the first two games.
The Vikings head to Santa Rosa tomorrow with first pitch at 2:30 p.m with their ace Rob Towne expected to take the mound.
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