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Carpinteria Takes Risk, Is Rewarded, 7-6


Intentionally putting the winning run on base in the final inning might not be wise.

But the calculated risk paid off for Coach Pat Cooney of Carpinteria on Tuesday. With his team holding a one-run lead and the tying run on third, Cooney intentionally walked Eric Livengood and pitched to Ian Martin of Village Christian.

Martin struck out and Carpinteria held on for a 7-6 victory in a Southern Section Division V baseball semifinal game at The Master's College.

Carpinteria (17-6) controlled the game from the start, using two errors by the Crusaders (18-6) to help build a 7-0 lead.

Village Christian, sparked by timely hitting from Jeremy Gonzales, Livengood and Warren Branum, rallied furiously in the final two innings.

Reliever David Lamar of Carpinteria loaded the bases, hitting two batters and walking another.

Branum followed with his second double, clearing the bases.

"We had a real good opportunity but the next two guys just couldn't do it," said Coach Brian Gibson of Village Christian. "They chose to walk [Livengood] and decided to pitch to a sophomore instead."

After failing to mount much offense against Carpinteria starter Bailey Di Ioia (10-3) in the first five innings, Village Christian got untracked by scoring three runs in the sixth.

Gonzales started the outburst, leading off with his sixth home run, and Livengood added a two-run double to pull the Crusaders to within 7-3.

But Village Christian's title hopes probably came unhinged in the early innings.

Al Quintana (3-4) of Village Christian allowed two runs in the first and had to work out of jams in the second and third.

Carpinteria broke through again in the fifth when Quintana failed to handle a ball hit in front of the plate with two out. Lamar followed with a two-run double off reliever Daniel Bowman.

The Warriors used a double-steal to score in the sixth.

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