The Score: Mitty 3, Serra 2.
The Star: Serra High’s Orlando Razo was the hard-luck loser as the visiting Padres fell in a tight West Catholic Athletic League game on Friday afternoon. The sophomore left-hander limited the defending Central Coast Section Division I champion Monarchs to three runs, two earned, in six innings in another impressive showing. Razo (3-3), who surrendered seven hits, has allowed two or fewer earned runs in four of his five starts.
The Turning Point: Serra (11-8, 6-5 WCAL) led for most of the game, but Mitty (14-3-1, 9-2) broke through to go ahead in the bottom of the sixth. Gordon Madej led off with a double down the left-field line and slugger Brett Fuller (3-for-3, two runs) immediately followed with an RBI single to left to knot the game at 2-2. Then with two outs, Mitty’s Tyler Davis hit Razo’s 1-1 pitch back up the middle to drive in courtesy runner Chris Drysdale from second and give the hosts a 3-2 lead. In the top of the seventh, Davis relieved winning pitcher Fuller and worked past a pair of two-out singles to shut down Serra and collect the save.
The Quote: “Our confidence is building up. … I feel even though we lost today, we can compete with the rest of the league. Our bats are coming alive, and they weren’t at the beginning of the season. … (Against) St. Francis, we were one hit away. And Mitty, we were one inning away.” – Serra senior catcher Sean McMillan, assessing his team with the regular season winding down and the WCAL and CCS playoffs around the corner.
What’s Next? Serra hosts El Camino (10-6-1) on Monday at 3:30 p.m. in its first game in the Knights of Columbus/Serra Spring Classic. El Camino, a contender in the Peninsula Athletic League Bay Division, is No. 5 this week in . Serra is No. 1.
The Bottom Line: Serra suffered another frustrating WCAL defeat. In the teams’ first meeting since the CCS semifinals last spring, Mitty snuffed out any realistic hope the Padres had of making a late charge at the league’s round-robin title. … Star seniors Fuller and Davis have given Serra fits for the better part of three years – and the duo enabled the Monarchs to edge the Padres again. … Despite the loss, Serra showed signs (again) that it has the ability to make some serious noise against elite opponents. The Padres hope those wins start coming soon.
Notes: Even though Serra struck out 11 times without drawing a walk, the lineup had a solid showing against two potent pitchers. Seven Padres had a hit – including two by Austin March. … Scoring continues to be a problem for the Padres against the top-tier WCAL teams. In six games against St. Francis, Valley Christian, Mitty and Bellarmine, Serra has totaled 15 runs. The Padres are 1-5 in those games. … Serra coach Craig Giannino has been impressed by Razo. “He’s pitching his tail off,” the coach said. Asked the key to the sophomore’s success, Giannino said: “Competes. Believes he can get anyone out.” … With the Padres down to their last out, pinch hitter Chris Redburn stepped in against Davis, the Washington-bound ace who had just struck out the first two batters he faced. Redburn calmly ripped a first-pitch single to center. … Serra took a 2-0 lead against Fuller (4-1) as March kicked off a second-inning surge with a two-out single to right and then promptly stole second. Derek Merryweather drove him in with a double to left-center and then Chris Lewis followed with an RBI single. … Merryweather, a recent addition to the starting lineup, had a double for the second straight game. … Fuller, the Mitty cleanup batter headed to San Jose State, came in batting just .224. But as usual, he looked great against Serra, registering his third multi-hit game of the season. … Davis (2-for-3, two RBIs) continued to wield a hot bat. After joining the everyday lineup midway through the WCAL season, he entered with a .429 average. He had an RBI single in the fourth and added the game-winning hit in the seventh. Giannino wished he walked Davis in the seventh with first base open. “I’m batting 1.000 walking guys and I should’ve trusted my gut and I didn’t. … I went away from my gut. That one’s on me.”
Mitty 3, Serra 2
S – 020 000 0 – 2 8 1
M – 000 102 x – 3 7 1
WP: Fuller (4-1). LP: Razo (3-3). Save: Davis (2).
2B: Merryweather, McMillan (S); Correa, Madej (M). 3 hits: Fuller (M). 2 hits: March (S); Davis (M). 2 RBI: Davis (M).
Serra 11-8, 6-5. Mitty 14-3-1, 9-2.