By Josh Miller
PALM SPRINGS, CA—The POWER won their fourth-straight SCCBL Championship with Wednesday night’s 8-2 victory over the Inland Valley Pirates to sweep the best-of-three series.
POWER starter Brooks Kriske (USC) was spectacular going seven innings and allowing two runs on three hits with six strikeouts.
“I stuck with what I’ve been working on all summer, with what the coaches have been telling me,” said Kriske after the game. “I have a great defense behind me and I knew we were going to score some runs and that makes my job a whole lot easier.”
The POWER struck first in the first inning when Nick King (Georgia) scored after an error on third baseman Jonny Reynoso allowed him to come home after stealing third.
The Pirates would take a 2-1 lead in the second after Kyle Garlik led off the inning with a triple and then scored on a fielder’s choice. Chareng Varela would also triple and score on a groundout by Fernando Escobar.
Ryne Clark (Chico St.) tied it up in the third inning after his RBI single scored Hunter Bening (NW Florida St.).
They would go ahead the next inning after Nate Pollock (Western Illinois) scored on an error by Pirates starter Cody Erraut.
The floodgates opened in the fifth inning as the first five POWER batters would reach base and eventually score.
Hunter Bening doubled to leadoff the inning. After a bases-loaded walk to AJ Young (Utah), Nate Pollock singled home Clark.
King followed with a sac fly to plate Sterry, and an RBI single from Scotty Burcham (Sacramento State) made it 7-2.
Jordan Zimmerman (Mesa CC) would chip in the final run for the POWER on a fielder’s choice.
Austin Lord (Mercer) pitched a scoreless eighth inning and retired the side in order.
Doug Finley closed things out for Palm Springs striking out the final batter.
We caught up with now four-time champion manager Harry Gurley after the game.
“I’m very proud of this team, they had a tough year, they came from behind in a number of different situations and when we had a must-win we were able to get it done,” said Gurley.
The POWER have three more tune-up games before they face off with the OCCL champions in next week’s So-Cal World Series.