May 24, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

Trevor Ernt cruises and Beckman stays in first with 5-0 PCL victory over Woodbridge

Cooper Munro (left) and Trevor Ernt led Beckman to a 5-0 PCL victory over Woodbridge Monday (Photo: Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone).

When left-hander Trevor Ernt is on the mound, Beckman baseball coach Kevin Lavalle can feel pretty relaxed.

It was definitely the case Monday as Ernt was on again in a key Pacific Coast League game. Ernt (5-0) allowed just two hits in his six innings of work while striking out five to help the Patriots defeat Woodbridge 5-0 at Beckman.

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Niklas Krutiak pitched a scoreless seventh inning, striking out one and allowing no hits for league leading Beckman (8-2, 3-0) in a game that was originally scheduled for Friday. Light rain fell for the final two innings.

“I sit over here in the dugout and just wait for us to go up again when Trevor is pitching,” said Lavalle. “He’s just something else. The kids love it when he pitches, they love playing defense behind him and he’s really prepared himself for his senior year and after the year he had as a junior and “to say, ‘I still have to get better,’ that’s a really dedicated kid and a really unselfish kid.”

Ernt has listened to the advice of his coach who has asked him to continue to get better.

“I could tell Trevor to pitch right-handed tomorrow and he would say, ‘yes sir’ and go out and do it,” Lavalle said.

Ernt’s teammates supported him with an 11-hit attack and two runs in the second inning on a double by Cooper Munro.

“It’s a lot easier to pitch when you know your team is going to put up a good amount of runs for you,” Ernt said. “It makes me a lot more comfortable. For sure, I’m able to trust my defense and I love the energy that we play with. It really brings my confidence up on the mound.”

Woodbridge (4-6, 0-3) had a chance to take an early lead in the second inning.

Adam Moylan walked and Noah Reid singled to put runners on first and third. Jakob Trestik then moved the runners over on a sacrifice.

But Moylan was thrown out at home after Connor Tallakson hit a grounder to third and reached on a fielder’s choice. Jeff Quezada flied out to end the threat.

In the bottom of the inning, Nick McLain doubled and Logan Jackson singled to put runners on first and third. Munro, who was subbing for C.J. Burnett (out ill) as the designated hitter delivered a two-run double.

“Cooper didn’t know he was going to start until probably when he showed up at the ballpark,” Lavalle said.

Munro said he was pleased he could contribute.

“It was my first hit of the season,” Munro said. “I’ve been hitting it right at people making hard contact and I’m just glad it fell through. I’m thankful for the opportunity to play and go out there and get a win for our team.”

Beckman added three more runs in the fifth inniung. Sean McLain led off with a triple and Ricky Teel singled. Connor McGuire drove home McLain with a sacrifice fly and Alec Gomez drove home another on a sacrifice bunt.

Gomez and Nick McLain later executed a double steal with Gomez scoring from third to put the Patriots ahead 5-0.

Sophomore Jack Bunnell (2-1) started on the mound for Woodbridge, allowing 10 hits through five innings. Ian Hardy pitched in the sixth inning for the Warriors.

“We just have to play better all the way around,” said Woodbridge Coach Ryan Brucker. “We didn’t play very well today. We can’t come out like we did today and expect to compete with Beckman or anybody in the PCL for that matter. It was a disappointing effort.

“I think Jack competed well on the mound for us. And it’s been the narrative here for the last three games. We haven’t been able to get any timely hits and haven’t really had a lot of opportunities to score. But we had two opportunities today and we didn’t cash in on them so we just have to keep grinding and hoping to improve.”

“It was a tough game, we’ve got to come out and play better tomorrow,” Bunnell added.

-Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone; timburt@ocsportszone.com