Heading into the sixth inning, Indians pitcher Ryan Carolan looked the part as Hart took on Cypress on the road in the second round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 playoffs on Tuesday.
Allowing one hit and five strikeouts over the course of the first five innings, Carolan found himself in a bit of a pitcher’s duel with Centurions pitcher Josh Landry.
In the sixth, Hart started to unravel, giving up four runs that would eventually give Cypress (23-8-1) the 4-0 win over Hart.
“For five innings, he kept us in the game,” said Hart head coach Jim Ozella of Carolan. “He was himself for most of the game. They had six hits today and only two were legit hits. We just didn’t give him any run support. Without his pitching, we wouldn’t have been in the game.”
After allowing two runners to get on base with a single and a bunt, the Centurions’ Elias Rios stepped to the plate and delivered a sacrifice fly into center field that allowed the runner to tag and bring in the game’s first run and give Cypress a 1-0 lead.
Later in the inning, with the bases loaded, another run crossed the plate thanks to yet another sacrifice fly, this time to right field by Cameron Repetti. The final two Centurion runs were scored by way of an RBI single by Braden Murphy to bring the final run count of the inning to four.
Pitching a complete game, Cypress starting pitcher Josh Landry only gave up one hit while striking out five and walking two batters to get the win for the Centurions and move them into Friday’s quarterfinals.
“Their guy did a good job of changing speeds on us and kept us off balance,” Ozella said. “Give him credit because he did a good job of pitching and we didn’t take advantage of certain opportunities.”
The Indians’ Cooper Austin was the lone player to get a hit off Landry, going 1-for-3 on the day with a single in the top of the sixth inning.
The Centurions will face off against Bishop Amat on Friday, who defeated Valencia 3-0 on Tuesday.
Hart finishes the year as the Foothill League champ with an overall record of 20-13 and promises to be back and reloaded for next season.
“This was a congratulation to a great group of 15 seniors who served as role models for our younger guys. There is nothing to sit back and be angry with. Now, it’s on the younger guys to take what they have learned from this season to heart and make something of it.”