Eastern High School's baseball players flew out from the East Coast for the 13th annual Righetti Spring Classic, but they showed plenty of zip on a cool, damp Tuesday night.
The Voorhees, New Jersey-based Vikings (4-1) were all over this one from the beginning, and they beat host Righetti (15-3) 14-1 in a first-round Pool C game at Elks Field.
The game was called after the top of the fifth inning. Eastern was the designated home team.
"We're a high-energy team," Eastern coach Rob Christ said afterward. "We like to play with high energy."
The Vikings had a lot of vocal energy during warm-ups, and they showed a lot of mental and physical energy during the game.
They swung aggressively at the plate and they hustled from beginning to end, never missing an opportunity to score or take the extra base whenever the Warriors made an errant throw or missed the cutoff man, which happened a lot.
Besides out-hitting the Warriors 11-2, the Vikings made no errors. The Warriors made five.
"They're a good team, and it's good for us to face good teams in this tournament," said Righetti coach Brian Tomooka.
"Those guys came out and they hustled, and we didn't respond."
Seven Eastern players had at least one hit. Davis Schneider had three hits, including a double and a two-run home run, and four RBIs. Jack Herman had two RBIs. Louis Priolo and Ron Silvestro both had two hits.
"To be honest, the hitting's been kind of hit-and-miss for us," said Christ.
"We scored 17 runs our first game, and then the next two our hitting was kind of sluggish. Everyone wants to move to California, where the weather's so nice. In New Jersey, we'll be playing in 40-degree weather."
Tanner Sampson singled in the lone Righetti run in the fifth. Right after that, Clarke Horowitz came on in relief of Eastern starter Jesse Barbera. Horowitz ended the game in style, striking out both batters he faced to finish it.
The Warriors ran up against a team that is used to winning tournaments.
"We won four tournaments last year," said Christ. He said one of those was a tourney dedicated to the announcer who called Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point game.
Eastern jumped on top with five runs off Righetti lefty Mitchell Bagby in the first.
Herman hit an RBI groundout, Schneider belted a two-run home to right and the Vikings scored on a hit batman and a passed ball.
Unofficially, Bagby threw 43 pitches in the first inning.
The Vikings then picked up an unearned run without getting a hit in the second inning.
Eastern right hander Barbera walked five over the first three innings and the Warriors loaded the bases on him in the third on a Bagby single sandwiched around two walks.
Barbera struck out the next two batters to get out of the innings.
Bagby has had a big year for the Warriors but he never found his rhythm Tuesday night.
He lasted just two innings. Bagby struck out four but he also walked four and hit a batter.
Voorhees, which is based in the Philadelphia metropolitan area, will play Mission Hills Alemany at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Righetti High School in another Pool C game. Righetti will play Alemany at 7 p.m. that night.
Orcutt Academy 13, Le Grand 6
The Spartans (5-16) completed a 2-0 finish in Pool B by beating the Bulldogs at Dunn High School.
Elijah Vega went 3-for-4 for Orcutt. Winning pitcher Tyler Zafiris and Devin Black both had two hits for the Spartans.
Orcutt Academy will play Dunn at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Dunn in an extra tournament game. The Spartans will begin championship bracket play Thursday.