SRJC sweeps Chabot, again


Will Mathis

Chabot College catcher Jake McIntosh walks back to the dugout after striking out looking. Chabot batters struck out 27 times and didn’t score a run in two games versus Santa Rosa Junior College to start the season.

Will Mathis, Baseball Analyst

Justin Bruihl, Ryan Calderon and Evan Hill combined for 12 strikeouts in Santa Rosa Junior College’s 4-0 win over Chabot College Jan. 28 at Cook Sypher Field.

The Bear Cubs [2-0] continue their dominance of the Gladiators [0-2]. It’s SRJC’s fourth straight win over Chabot, and its third consecutive shutout of the Gladiators dating back to last season’s playoffs.

“We play them every year so it’s kind of a rivalry,” said SRJC second baseman Matt Kimura. “For us to get the first two wins is big momentum for us, confidence booster too.”

Bruihl started the game for SRJC on a pitch count due to spraining his ankle six weeks ago. The left-handed sophomore pitched 4.2 innings, allowed one hit, struck out five batters, and surrendered one walk. Bruihl signed a letter of intent to University of California, Berkeley in November.

“I pushed my throwing back so I’m not where I want to be right now, but I’ll be up there in the next couple weeks,” Bruihl said. “For the most part I let my defense do what they do and they did a really good job today.”

Calderon pitched 3.1 innings in relief. The right-handed freshman allowed three hits and struck out four. Calderon induced an important double-play with runners on first and third in a close game to escape the eighth inning.

SRJC is relying heavily on its bullpen to start the season with starters Bruihl and Garrett Hill both on pitch counts. Sophomore Jared Noonan pitched five innings in relief in the Bear Cubs 7-0 win at Chabot College Jan. 27.

“They preach all year just throw strikes, pound zone,” Calderon said. “It’s definitely important for us just to stay steady with it.”

SRJC’s pitching staff has struck out 27 batters and allowed zero runs to start the season.

Left fielder Blake Berry scored the first run for SRJC in the bottom of the third inning. With one out, Berry was walked, stole second base and was then driven home on an RBI single from catcher Trevor Mallett, his fifth RBI of the season.

Third baseman Josh Lenney reached first on a throwing error in the bottom of the fifth inning and  advanced to second, third and home on three wild pitches to give SRJC a 2-0 lead.

SRJC made the score 4-0 in the bottom of the eighth inning with back-to-back RBIs from Kimura and shortstop Juan Lopez.

Left-handed sophomore Evan Hill struck out all three batters in the top of the ninth inning.

SRJC’s next game is against De Anza College [2-0] at 2 p.m. Jan. 31 at San Jose Municipal Stadium.