While many of their classmates are on spring break, members of the Menlo-Atherton baseball team are hard at work in a tournament in Rancho Cordova. The Bears aren't complaining, despite having to play two games on Tuesday.
A doubleheader sweep by Menlo-Atherton made the day all the better as the Bears improved to 3-0 in the annual tourney following a 10-1 over Lindhurst and an 11-0 victory over Mesa Verde.
The Bears pounded out 20 hits in the two victories and now have produced 38 runs and 32 hits in their three victories. M-A went 3-2 in this tourney last season while finishing third. The Bears stand to finish much higher with two guaranteed games remaining.
Against Lindhurst, junior Michael Ogrey made his varsity pitching debut for M-A and coasted through five innings while allowing no runs, no walks, just hits while striking out eight to get the win.
Kyle Zirbes had a three-run triple with Nick Lange also driving in three runs. Alex Aguiar and Will Lyons each made sparkling defensive plays for the Bears.
In Game 2 on Tuesday, Myles Brewer blasted two home runs, drove in four runs and pitched four scoreless innings before departing. He allowed only four hits while throwing just 40 pitches.
Dylan Cook came on in relief, his second of the day, and tossed two scoreless innings while giving up a pair of hits. Cook also blasted a home run while Aguiar and Cam Winn doubled for the Bears (13-6).
In addition to the excellent pitching -- M-A has allowed 10 hits in three games -- the Bears' defense has committed just two errors.
In the SCVAL El Camino Division, Gunn took a step backward in the race following a 9-1 loss to host Milpitas on Tuesday. The Titans (4-4, 7-7-1) had won three straight heading into last week's spring break, but made their return a rocky one with six errors and just four hits. The teams will meet again on Thursday at Gunn at 3:30 p.m.
Continuing its preparation for next Wednesday's showdown for the West Bay Athletic League title with Menlo School, Sacred Heart Prep overcame cool, heavy air and intermittent drizzle to post a 212-229 nonleague victory over Sacred Heart Cathedral on the Lake Course at the Olympic Club in San Francisco on Tuesday. Junior Kevin Knox led SHP (9-1) with a 2-over 38 while his brother, Bradley, carded a 39.
Menlo School cruised to a 13-5 victory over Serra in the opening round of the JLT Tournament at St. Ignatius Prep on Tuesday. Sophomore Wiley Osborne notched four goals and an assist and Nick Schultz added three goals and an assist for the Knights (10-6), who play host St. Ignatius on Wednesday.
Sophomore Luc McNally tallied nine saves for Menlom while junior Pete Foster pitched in with a pair of goals and Ryan Grzejka scored and had two assists. Junior John Braskamp, freshman Adam Yecies and senior Kyle Tessier-Lavigne each had a goal while senior Ryan Stastny and freshman Ben Garfinkel added assists.
Getting four goals from Leigh Dairaghi, Palo Alto maintained its hold on second place in the SCVAL De Anza Division with a comfortable 14-3 victory over host Gunn on Tuesday night.
The Vikings improved to 6-1 in division play (9-7 overall) by jumping out to a 7-1 lead and coasting from there against the Titans (0-8, 3-10). Nina Kelty added three goals and Layla Memar scored twice with three assists.
Palo Alto welcomed back junior Nicky Hu and made a nice tuneup for its final SCVAL De Anza Division match with a 5-2 victory over visiting Los Gatos on Tuesday.
After missing all of the season (prior to this week) while concentrating on raising his NorCal Tennis Association ranking, Hu has returned to his No. 1 singles position just for this week and posted a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Nico Lunardi. Dar Shavit added a 6-2, 6-3 win at No. 4 singles with the Paly doubles sweeping to close out the victory. The Viking (2-9, 12-9) will wrap up league play Thursday by hosting Gunn at 3:30 p.m.
"He is a great kid, loves the team, but, took off the majority of his junior year to focus on this ranking," Paly coach Andy Harader said of Hu. "He is an inspiration for his teammates; good for the team right now."
Harader said he expects Hu to be with the Vikings full-time next season. According to league rules, Hu is not eligible to compete in the SCVAL individual championships next week at Los Altos or play in CCS, should the Vikings qualify, since he hasn't been with the team long enough this season.
Hu helped the Vikings fashion a 15-7 record last season before Paly fell to eventual champion Menlo in the CCS semifinals, 6-1. Hu produced his team's only victory, defeating current Stanford freshman Jamin Ball at No. 1 singles. Ball had to default the match to illness after losing the first set, 6-3.