By Ernest Stone
After a bevy of wild pitches, errors and hit batters saw both Gateway High School and Bay School crawl out to a 2-2 tie amid a 35-minute first inning, it became clear that whichever team kept its composure would edge out a victory.
Luckily for Gateway, it was able to turn to infielder/pitcher Daniel Galvez, who provided dominant pitching and efficient hitting to lift the Gators to an 8-5 win in Bay Counties League Central play on Friday at Balboa Park.
“It’s all about keeping it simple,” said Galvez, who finished 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. “I know its cliché, but I was just looking to get singles when I was hitting and batters out when I was pitching, and luckily things opened up.”
The Gators (4-3, 2-0) started pitcher Charlie Busch, who struggled with his command throughout his brief outing. Busch surrendered only four hits in his 2 1/3 innings of work, but his three wild pitches, one hit batter, error, and one walk allowed Bay to score all five of their runs in the first three innings.
Bay (4-4, 1-2) struggled to make contact with pitches all day, but the Breakers’ four stolen bases and aggressive base running allowed them the opportunity to score without the presence of a consistent hitting threat and helped them to a 3-2 lead after two innings.
Unfortunately for Bay, Galvez took over the game in the third inning. In addition to sparking a four-run rally in the top of the third frame, Galvez assumed control of pitching duties to help the Gators escape to the fourth inning with a 6-5 lead.
“Gateway made a couple of key plays in the beginning and we didn’t,” said Bay head coach Steve Glass. “We have a young and inexperienced team, and while we like the talent we have, our lack of ability to do the little things really hurt us in this one.”
Galvez cruised for the remainder of the game, allowing just four hits while striking out six batters in 4 2/3 innings of work.
The win keeps the Gators undefeated in the early BCL Central season, with a two-week hiatus that will allow the Gators to rest before making a serious push to defend their 2010 league title.
“This team’s biggest attribute is its hard work ethic,” said head coach Brandon Lemus. “We were able to overcome the sloppiness of the first couple of innings and control the game, and that type of resilience will pay dividends as the season progresses.”
G – Daniel Galvez triples, Paul Bustamante scores
G – Matt Kalbrosky reaches on error, Galvez scores.
B – Henry Gale reaches on error, Chevalo Duckett scores.
B – Lucas Peck singles, Jason Nemerovski scores
B – Duckett singles, Jake Vollen scores.
G – Francisco Gonzales singles, Galvez scores
G – Charlie Busch sacrifice fly, Kalbrosky scores
G – Max Wolf-Johnson singles, Gonzales scores
G – David Busch reaches on error, Wolf-Johnson Scores
B – Isaias Moya grounds out, Gale scores
B – Lucas Knorr singles, Peck scores
G – Charlie Busch triples, Kalbrosky scores
G – Bustamante hits a double, David Busch scores