Bullets in semis
RENO – Scott Greene picked an opportune time to throw his best game of the summer.
Greene, the former Wooster High star and a member of the Chico State baseball team, tossed a three-hitter as the Nevada Bullets won their bracket with a 3-1 victory over the Seals Saturday at Bishop Manogue High School at the Sparks Sertoma Classic.
The Bullets, winners of the Blue Division, will play the second seed from the Red Division, the Novato Knicks at 9 a.m. today. The other semifinal pits the NorCal Bulls against Pro Player Baseball, which won the Red Division. The finals are scheduled for 11:45 a.m.
Except for the third inning when the Seals scored their only run of the game (it was unearned), they didn’t get a runner to second base. Greene retired the first seven of the game and the last 11 of the contest.
“That (Greene’s performance) was a perfect example of what I’ve been talking about to our pitchers the last two weeks,” Bullets manager Jim Blueberg said. “Keep the ball around the kneecaps and when you’re behind split the plate with an off-speed pitch. He was like Picasso today.”
Greene said his last complete game came in the 2010 season at Chico State against Western Oregon.
“This was my best (game) of the summer definitely,” Greene said. “My slider was working all the time. They (the sliders) were all down and away and they kept going after it.
“I wasn’t really worried, I knew we’d eventually get some runs. I just had to hold them.”
The Bullets took a 1-0 lead in the third when Chris Woolley hit a one-out single and scored on Kevin Taylor’s off-field double to left-centerfield. Taylor moved to third on a fly ball by Brooks Klein, but was stranded when Zach Hendrix grounded out to short.
The run Greene allowed came in the bottom of the third, and was unearned. The Bullets had Todd Surdez trapped between third and home, but Woolley’s sidearm throw got away and Surdez scored, tying the game at 1.
The Bullets had chances to score in the fifth and sixth, but came up empty each time.
In the fifth, Woolley was picked off first by lefty Graham Rodriguez for the second out. That proved to be huge when Taylor followed with his second double of the game which would have easily scored Woolley.
With two outs in the sixth and the score still tied at 1, Colby Blueberg was picked off third base to end the inning.
The elder Blueberg took responsibility for both plays.
“We were trying to be aggressive,” Blueberg said. “We had the steal on with Woolley. With Colby, I told him if the pitch was in the dirt to be aggressive. The catcher made a good play.”
The Bullets took a 3-1 lead in the top of the seventh when Zach Hendrix singled to right-centerfield, scoring Woolley and Taylor, who had walked and singled, respectively.
“It was a curveball,” said Hendrix of his hit which came on a 1-2 pitch. “I was just looking to protect the plate.”
NEVADA BULLETS B TEAM LOSES TWO
The Panamanian Yankees knocked off the Nevada Bullets B team 7-3, sending the local to its second straight defeat.
C.J. Maldanado went 3-for-3 with a solo homer, while ex-Carson star Sean Costella went 1-for-4 with a two-run homer. Derrick Wiltgen went 2-for-3.
The Bullets’ B team lost their second game on Saturday 11-6 to Pro Player Baseball. No other information was available.