SFL-leading Rocklin rolls over Del Oro in extras, 8-1

By: Joshua Gutierrez / Special to the Journal
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The Del Oro varsity baseball team was unable to avoid a sweep from Sierra Foothill League rival Rocklin on Saturday, as the Golden Eagles allowed seven runs in the eighth inning in an 8-1 loss on the road.

The Golden Eagles’ 1-5 record in SFL play has them in the company of Roseville (1-5) and Nevada Union (1-5). Rocklin (6-0) stays atop the standings, with Granite Bay (5-1) and Woodcreek (4-2) close behind.

For seven innings Saturday, Del Oro starter Keith Heyer commanded the mound, allowing two hits and one earned run. The senior pitcher struck out four and flirted with a shutout until the sixth inning.

In the third inning, Jake Noah gave Heyer the lead, as the junior third baseman smacked a solo home run to straight-away center.

Hanging onto a 1-0 lead in the sixth inning, Rocklin’s Nick Adams advanced to third base following two passed balls. Ryan Alexander then drove in the tying run with an infield single.

In the bottom half of the sixth, Del Oro (5-12) responded with a one-out hit by Billy Rockefeller, who put himself on second base after a subsequent balk.

In the play that defined the game, Del Oro’s Bryce Beauchamp hit what appeared to be the lead-grabbing hit to shallow center field. Rockefeller, sure of the hit, headed directly for home.

But a diving catch by Rocklin center fielder Jake Faulkner put Rockefeller out of place as the Thunder pulled an 8-4 double play to end the inning.

“The ball was either trapped or caught,” said Del Oro head coach Jeff Dietrich. “The umpire sees that differently we win, but he didn’t. It is what it is.”

In extra innings, Rocklin was able to score seven runs on three hits, two base on balls, a hit batter and two costly errors by the Golden Eagles.

“I’m happy how we played for seven innings,” Dietrich said. “This is a tough one to swallow. We played a good series with them until a crooked number in the last inning of the last game in the series.”