It was a great season for the Millikan baseball team, but unfortunately for Rams fans it ended on a down note. Millikan three-peated as Moore League champions for the first time since 1993 but were ousted from the first round of the playoffs for the third consecutive year, falling to Murrieta Valley 3-1.
“It’s the same feeling, it always sucks,” said Rams coach Ron Keester. “It really does.”
The Rams faced a strong pitcher in the Nighthawks starter Drew D’Ambra, a 6-foot-4 lefty who had good movement on Thursday evening at Blair Field.
“Their pitcher was good, he had a lot of movement and he made some big 3-2 pitches to keep us from making plays,” said Keester.
The Rams were held to just two hits in the loss, and left seven runners on base. After falling into a 2-0 hole in the second inning on a two-RBI double, the Rams got a run back in the bottom of the second when Michael Barrientos’ RBI grounder scored Cody Bey.
But after getting runners on base in four of the final five innings, Millikan couldn’t bring them home.
“It’s playoff baseball, you’ve gotta get key hits,” said Keester. “They got one, we didn’t. Two hits won’t win many games. We just didn’t take advantage of the opportunities we had.”
CIF Baseball: Long Beach Millikan vs. Murrieta Valley
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Lakewood was defeated by Crescenta Valley, 5-2, on the road. The Lancers had an early lead but saw it slip away, and starting pitcher Sebastian Irwin sidelined with an injury after taking a comebacker to the hand.
St. Anthony fell 3-2 to Bishop Diego on a walkoff. The Saints fell behind early but tied the game at 2-2 on a bases-loaded balk, but couldn’t hold off the hosts in the bottom of the seventh.
The Moore League has two more chances to win a first-round game this year, as Wilson travels to Katella High and Poly travels to Fullerton High. Both games begin at 3:15 p.m., follow @562sports on Twitter for updates.