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Vars baseball makes history with sixth consecutive championship

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The boys run their victory lap after defeating the Bears and winning champs on May 7 at AT&T Park. Photo by Anita Liu

The varsity baseball team has, once again, proven itself on the field by winning the All-City championship at AT&T Park on May 7. The Cardinals made history by becoming the first varsity baseball team in the Academic Athletic Association league to claim a sixth consecutive championship. The team’s 3–0 win over the Mission Bears added to their season record of 14–1.

The crowd cheers for the Cardinals. Photo by Anita Liu

It was not an easy victory. The score remained at 0–0 record for five innings. It was not until the sixth inning that the Cardinals brought their runs in. In the sixth inning, senior co-captain and pitcher Alex Bradshaw batted a single and senior co-captain and pitcher Owen Mahoney followed him to first with a walk. Junior catcher Levi Humphrey’s sacrifice bunt took him to first after Mahoney, thus loading the bases. With sophomore infielder Cameron Tang’s single, Bradshaw scored the first run of the game, bringing the Cardinal fans to their feet. Then senior infielder Devlin Stanley’s single brought Mahoney and Humphrey to home base, giving the Cardinals the victory, 3–0.

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Defense wins championships

The adage defense wins championships proved true once again. Throughout the game, the Cardinals consistently kept the Bears from scoring. Bradshaw and Mahoney pitched 83 and 12 times, respectively, executing the total of 8 strikeouts. “We tightened up on defense and that’s how you win close baseball games at the end,” head Coach Daryl Semein said.

Senior co-captain and pitcher Alex Bradshaw throwing hard. Photo by Anita Liu.

The Cardinal defense completed a successful season with statistics that scream dominance. The Cardinals accumulated an average of 0.907 field percentage, a total of 6637 putouts and a total of 218 strikeouts.

While the Cardinal batters had low slugging and on-base percentages in the game, several of them had great performances. Junior Jordy Bach has an on-base plus slugging of 1.334, on-base percentage of 0.667 and a slugging percentage of 0.666. Tang produced an on-base plus slugging of 1.167, an on-base percentage of 0.667, and a slugging percentage of 0.500. “We just kept hitting the ball hard on the ground and kept the ball away from the air,” Semein said.

Bradshaw takes a big swing. Photo by Anita Liu.

Meanwhile, Bradshaw and Mahoney are convinced the season’s success was due to the change in their pump-up song from the “Star Spangled Banner” to “Promiscuous.” During practices and before every game, the team would listen to the song to hype them up. The one time that the team didn’t play the song before a game, they lost.

The Cardinals played their starting Transbay Series game against Oakland Tech on May 16 at Laney College and lost 4–3. In the following game against Oakland Tech on May 18 at San Francisco State College, the Cardinals fell short 3–2.

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Vars baseball makes history with sixth consecutive championship