Senior pitcher Patrick Moriarty hurled a complete-game four-hit shutout as Menlo-Atherton defeated Rio Linda, 4-0, on Wednesday morning in the Cordova Easter Tournament in Rancho Cordova. Moriarty struck out four while allowing only three balls to reach the outfield two on singles, and one on a fly-out to left.
Moriarty's 98-pitch victory was aided by sterling defensive support from his teammates, including a key double play in the fifth inning and a perfect throw by catcher Jeff Keller to nail a Rio Linda baserunner on a steal attempt in the second inning. Keller also called a brilliant game from the behind the plate as M-A improved its season record to 7-6 and Cordova Easter Tournament mark to 2-2.
M-A took a 1-0 lead in the third inning following a line-drive single by Moriarty and a couple of Rio Linda errors. The Bears scored three important insurance runs in the sixth when Kyle Zirbes singled, Keller walked, Chris Gow laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt, and Nils Gilbertson ripped a two-run single. Chace Warren plated the other run with a sacrifice fly to left.
The Bears' five hits came against talented Rio Linda sophomore pitcher Miles Chambers, who struck out nine while walking just one.
M-A returns to action on Thursday in its final game of the Cordova Easter Tournament.