McBean Stadium was rocking on Friday for Opening Night, with an attendance of 1,454. Anthony Perez (Cal State East Bay) set the tone early, with four scoreless innings, zero walks and five strikeouts, which put him in line for the win.
Perez was able to escape a jam in the 1st inning, thanks in part to a beautifully turned double play by SS JT Maloney (Sac City) and 2B Cade Sanchez (Texas A&M Corpus Christi).
The Potters bats came to life quickly in the second inning, starting with a double down the line from Brandon Springer (William Jessup). Landon Weiss (William Jessup), who got the call from first year manager Jon Peters to join the Potters three days prior to Opening Night, got the scoring started with an RBI single to center field, knocking in his William Jessup teammate. Cade Sanchez followed with a two-run single to extend the Potters lead to 4-0 after two innings.
The bullpen picked up right where Perez left off. Logan Bell (Bowling Green State) went two innings, notching three strikeouts, and allowing one unearned run, on an error by LF Zack Malone (Sacramento State), which plated the Knicks second run of the game.
Following the error, Bell found himself in a tight situation. With the help of 1,454 energetic Potter fans, he was able to record a crucial strikeout of Joey Taddie to end the inning.
Peyton Stumbo (UNR) closed it out for the Potters with two scoreless innings, striking out four. Stumbo earned the save as well, resulting in a final score of 5-2.
The Potters take game one of the three-game series with the Novato Knicks, and will take the field again tomorrow at 6:05 PM @ McBean Stadium for Strikeout Cancer Night with fireworks after the game.
The Potters hit the road for the first time of the 2023 season. Along with the first road game of the year, it was also the first CCL league game of the young season. It was a breezy Tuesday night as fans packed Arnold Field in Sonoma and got settled in for first pitch.
It is always great to have returning Potters and we had a few of those tonight. John Alkire (Charleston Southern) made his season debut on the mound. Alkire found himself in an early jam as the Stompers worked two runners on. He was able to strike out Tyler Martinez to end the first inning with no runs allowed.
The top of the 2nd inning gave the Potters a much needed spark. A moonshot off the bat of Trey Furrey (Oklahoma Baptist) gave the Potters a quick 1-0 lead over the Stompers. Zack Malone (Sac State) followed with a double, but the Potters failed to convert to end the inning.
The Potters lead quickly vanished in the bottom of the second inning. A single and a walk set up two runners on with no outs for the Stompers. Isaiah Velazco torched the Potters all night, as he roped a two run double to give the Stompers a 2-1 lead.
Woody Brennan (Undecided) followed Alkire on the mound. Brennan came out of the gates rolling. A six pitch first inning allowed manager Jon Peters to ride the hot hand. Brennan followed with another scoreless inning, keeping the deficit at 1.
Cade Sanchez (Texas A&M-Corpus Christi) came through huge for the Potters in the top of the sixth inning. Sanchez drove in Zack Malone (Sac State) on an RBI groundout to tie the game up at 2-2.
Sebastian Kirchner (University of New Mexico) followed Brennan on the bump. Kirchner did his job, holding the Stompers to zero runs and striking out four batters over two innings of work. Kirchner will look to continue to play a major role out of the bullpen.
Eric Vasser (Sac City) was next in line for the Potters. Vasser was dealing until he was met with the man of the night, Isaiah Velazco. Velazco muscled a solo shot over the right field fence, to tie the game up at 3-3 in the eighth inning.
The game would move to extra innings, after both teams failed to score in the ninth. The Potters could not come through with a run in the top of the tenth inning, which put them in a very difficult position.
Only needing one run, the Stompers executed a sacrifice bunt to move the runner over to third base. A pop up was hit by Brandon Marion, which ended up falling in no man's land, and as a result the Stompers walked off on Opening Night.
The Potters take on the Stompers again Wednesday June 7th, at McBean Stadium! It is the first home game of CCL league play, as well as Ladies Night and Stella Rosa Wine Wednesday. $3 Sangrias and all women 21+ get free admission into the game. First pitch is at 6:05PM, gates open at 5:05PM.
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