Vanderfin holds down Warriors, Cardinals rally

Hank Vanderfin pitched nine scoreless innings on Wednesday to pick up a victory for the Bishop Diego baseball team, but the final score wasn’t what you might think.

The Cardinals dug themselves into a nine-run hole before digging themselves out, grabbing hold of a 10-9 Tri-Valley League victory over visiting Carpinteria in ten innings.

Jon Salda hugs teammate Ryan Landeros after Landeros scored the winning run in Wednesday's 10-9 extra-inning game.

“It’s amazing. It hasn’t happened to me my whole high school career, so it just feels great,” Vanderfin said of the sizeable comeback needed to win, which was made possible by his near flawless performance.

The junior right-hander was never over-powering but allowed only three hits after entering the game to start the second inning.

“He was great,” said Carpinteria head coach Pat Cooney. “He was around the plate, forcing our guys to bat the ball to their players. Just really, really steady so credit to him.”

After staking the Warriors to a 9-0 lead at the end of the first inning, the Cardinals scored three in the third and six in the fourth to draw even. But Carpinteria reliever Robert Thornton matched Vanderfin’s zeros from the fifth to the 10th inning, until a walk with the bases loaded forced in Ryan Landeros with the winning run.

“Wow. We haven’t come back at all this year,” said first-year coach Casey Cloud, whose Cardinals are now 2-5 in league. “That was the first comeback all year for us so that was huge. And 9-0, that just doesn’t happen very often in baseball.”

The Warriors built their nine-run lead in the top of the first inning by sending 13 batters to the plate. Jose Carrillo, Thornton, Victor Garcia and Steven Blum recorded successive RBIs from the 4-5-6-7 spots in the order to get things going. Zach Boberg reached base twice in the inning, recording a 2-RBI single in his second at-bat while scoring twice himself.

Bishop Diego pitcher Hank Vanderfin, who tossed nine scoreless innings on Wednesday.

Carpinteria collected seven of its 10 hits in that frame, and managed to advance only one runner past second base after that.

The Cardinals posted their big inning in the bottom of the fourth, scoring six runs on only two hits. Five walks and a Carpinteria fielding error helped the Cardinals move through their lineup and chase Warrior starter Steven Blum. Thornton came on with one out in the fourth and the Warriors still winning 9-6.

Reese Moulton, the first batter Thornton faced, maintained the Cardinals’ momentum with a two-run single.  Two batters later, Vanderfin drew a walk to force in the tying run.

Carpinteria falls to 3-4 in league and is 9-6 overall. The two rivals meet again for the last time this season on Friday at Carpinteria.


Carpinteria 900 000 000 0 – 9 10 4

Bishop Diego 003 600 000 1 – 10 7 5

C – S. Blum, Thornton(4), and DCarrillo. BD – Yokubaitis, Vanderfin(2), and Salda. No Extra Base Hits