Bush Bombs while Butler Calms Royals’ Bats

Submitted by: Ron Smith - April 15th, 2016

 

Alex Bush

Alex Bush
(Photo by Angela Brown)

A pair of two-run home runs by Alex Bush and eight shutout innings on the mound from Daniel Butler helped power #7 Westmont Baseball (33-7, 18-4 GSAC) to an 8-0 Golden State Athletic Conference win over Hope International (19-22-1, 9-13) on Friday afternoon at Russ Carr Field. The Warriors scored seven of their eight runs by virtue of four home runs.

The Warriors have not lost on Friday in more than a year. Since April 10, 2015, Westmont has won 14 Friday games. The only interruption was on March 11 when the game was postponed due to rain. Ironically, the game against The Master’s was made up on Monday, March 14 with the Warriors losing 8-7 in 10 innings.

Today’s victory was the 20th of Butler’s career against just two losses and ties Butler’s win-loss record from last year at 9-1. Butler, who threw 109 pitches, gave up just six hits while striking out 13 of the 30 men he faced. Butler currently sits in sixth place in the Warriors’ career wins list.

Michael Stefanic led off the bottom of the first inning by driving the ball down the right field line for a double. A sacrifice bunt by Michael Frigon advanced Stefanic to third before Bush belted a 2-1 count over the right field fence.

Westmont added a run in the second inning after Alika McGuire reached on a two-out infield single. A single to left by Andrew Devian advanced McGuire to second before Stefanic singled to center to drive in the Warriors’ centerfielder.

In the third inning, Jarrett Costa unleashed a two-out solo home run to right-center field to put the Warriors on top 4-0.

Frigon reached on an infield single to short in the fifth inning to set-up Bush’s encore. Bush obliged by turning an 0-1 pitch into a blast down the right field line that stay fair on its way past the foul pole.

The Warriors’ final home run of the game came in the eighth inning after lead-off batter Derek Rodigo was hit by a pitch. Third baseman Graylin Derke went deep for the Warriors to tally his third home run in as many games and his fifth of the season.

Lance Simpson provided the clean-up duty on the hill in the ninth. After giving up a one-out double to Lee Mutter, Simpson cajoled Martin Teague to fly out to center field before striking out Brett Finicle.

The Warriors tallied 13 hits on the day, led by Stefanic with three. Bush, Derke and Devian added two apiece.

In other GSAC play, #11 Vanguard defeated William Jessup 3-2 to remain one game behind the Warriors in the GSAC standings. Menlo picked up an 8-7 win at Biola and San Diego Christian triumphed over Arizona Christian 12-10.

The win by the Warriors makes Westmont the first team to secure a spot in the GSAC Tournament that will be conducted May 9-12 at a location to be determined.

Tomorrow, Westmont and Hope International will conclude their three-game series with a doubleheader. First pitch is scheduled for 11:00 a.m.

[box score]