Monty McCasland pitched seven shutout innings to lead No. 16 Vanguard to a 7-3 victory over the Morningside baseball team on Friday in Costa Mesa, Calif.
McCasland blanked the Mustangs on two hits over the first seven innings, allowing only a second inning single to Dylan Mersola and a seventh inning double by Joe Genoways before he turned the game over to the Vanguard bullpen. McCasland, 4-1, walked three and struck out five.
The Lions led wire-to-wire after they took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Brandon Sandoval had a leadoff walk, stole second, and scored on an error.
Vanguard expanded its lead to 4-0 when it plated three more runs in the fifth, two on a single by Brock Eissman and another on a single by Sandoval.
The Lions made it 6-0 in the bottom of the sixth when Bryce Wetherell delivered a two-run single.
The Mustangs finally broke through when they roughed up Lion reliever Michael Kashou for three runs in the top of the eighth inning to close within 6-3. Kashou allowed three hits and walked a batter before he exited after getting only two outs. Kashou retired the first two batters he faced before Cole Chapin walked to keep the inning alive. Chapin advanced to second on a balk and came home on a RBI single by Blake Rogers, who then came around to score when Nathan DeChaine blasted a two-run home run.
Morningside eventually loaded the bases with two outs after a double by Genoways, a walk by David Foley and a single by Blake Meacham before a fly out to left field ended the eighth.
Vanguard capped the game’s scoring when Jacob Leal slugged a solo home run with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Genoways had two of the Mustangs’ six hits with a pair of doubles. DeChaine had a home run, while Rogers, Meacham and Mersola all had singles.
Mustang starting pitcher J.L. Tourville allowed six runs, three of them earned, on three hits with four walks and one strikeout over the first 5.1 innings to take the loss.
Morningside will take a 10-7 record into a doubleheader against Vanguard on Saturday.