Carson baseball beats South Tahoe |

Carson baseball beats South Tahoe

Staff and news service reports

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE – Joe Mercer came on in relief to snuff out a seventh-inning South Tahoe rally, and Carson High School held on for a 15-11 Northern 4A baseball victory on Thursday afternoon.

The shorthanded Vikings scored five runs in the seventh inning, but could not catch Carson at Todd Fields.

Carson (9-4, 8-3 Northern 4A) took command for good with six runs in the sixth innings, then scored two more in the seventh before holding off a fierce Viking rally.

“One thing we did today that I liked was we got the runs in situations where we needed them,” Carson coach Ron McNutt said. “ANytime you get 18 to 19 in a ballgame, that really helps you out.”

South Tahoe entered the seventh trailing 15-6. After John Capitani popped the first out in the seventh, a Vikings offense that had been dormant since the fourth swung into motion. South Tahoe manufactured three runs with an out, then two more with two outs. Mercer came on for the final before Toby O’Brien was thrown out between second and third to end the rally.

Carson senior Randy Loff struck out just three in seven innings, but improved to 3-0 as a starter with the win.

“Randy really had two bad innings, but he pitched well for us overall,” McNutt said.

Junior Jarred Uppendahl battled for South Tahoe, but could not pick up the win. South Tahoe came as close as 6-5 in the fourth inning with Uppendahl creating outs, but Carson pulled away.

“We rallied,” said Vikings skipper Doug Russell, whose club fell to 1-10 and 1-10 in league. “It’s difficult to rally trailing nine runs, but we tried, and set a tone we need to go into the next 10 games this year.”

Carson, though, did not commit an error while South Tahoe had three. The Senators also were better at the plate: Brian Kleidosty had three hits as the leadoff man, Carl Winter added two more and Nick Gitthens and Evan McQuirk each had two. Senior Tim Sprinkles had three hits to lead South Tahoe, and Matt Connelly and Ryan Cullen two each.

After starting the season with a mammoth road trip, then falling to Galena and Carson in its first three home games this week, the Vikings take on Sparks in a doubleheader Saturday. The Railroaders entered the week two places above the Vikings (4-6, 4-6) . But Russell is confident South Tahoe can make up some ground

“I expect to win those,” he said. “They are a beatable baseball team. We’re playing pretty good baseball right now.”

Carson will face Galena in a doubleheader starting at 10 a.m. Saturday. Projected starting pitchers are Ken Heald and Chris Padgett.

Dan Thomas contributed to this report.