Foresters off to solid start at NBC World Series

The Santa Barbara Foresters opened defense of their National Baseball Congress World Series title on Saturday with a 9-3 win over the San Antonio Titans in Wichita, Kan.

Starter Gary Cornish turned in a solid performance, striking out seven batters in seven innings and allowing two earned runs.

Cornish got plenty of offensive support. The Foresters scored three runs in the first inning and added four more in the third.

Matt Henderson, Jeremy Montalbano, John Brontsema and Ryan Chandler all collected two hits and Montalbano drove in two runs for the Foresters, who are seeking a tournament record-tying sixth championship.

Santa Barbara is back in action Sunday against the St. Joseph (Mo.) Mustangs.

The start of Saturday’s game was delayed due to a serious injury suffered by a bat boy in the previous game that went 13 innings.

The 9-year-old bat boy for the Liberal (Kan.) Bee Jays was struck in the head by a player’s follow-through swing of a bat near the on-deck circle. The boy was rushed to the hospital and was listed in critical condition an hour after the game, according to a report by the Wichita Eagle newspaper. The boy, Kaiser Carlile, was wearing a helmet.

Home-plate umpire Mark Goldfeder came to the boy’s aid and treated him until the ambulance arrived, the newspaper reported. Goldfeder is a 25-year veteran as a paramedic with the Tarpon Springs (Fla.) Fire Rescue.

Liberal won the game 13-5 in 13 innings.