Bucs beat Power to advance to championship series

On Tuesday night in Palm Springs, the Inland Valley Buccaneers upset the top seeded Palm Springs for the second straight game 5-4 to advance to the SCCBL championship round.

The Bucs got out to the 1-0 lead in the third inning. Malcolm Smith would get on base on an error by the shortstop and then proceed to steal his first base of the game to advance to second. After the Bucs failed to bring him in on their next two at bats, Christian Valdez would get an RBI single to put the Bucs ahead. They would add to their lead in the fifth inning with three more runs  to make it 4-0. Brad Lewis would get a big single bringing home Tyus Santa Anna and Griffin Hennessey.

With the Bucs ahead 4-0, the Palm Springs Power would chip away at the lead starting in the 6th inning. After Bucs starter Aaron Bernal held the Power scoreless for the first five innings, the Power would get their first run on a Ben Nisle single bring home Matt Green who lead off the inning with a double to make it 4-1. After giving up back to back doubles and making the score 4-2, Aaron Bernal would be replaced by Jake Wilkerson. Wilkerson would get out of the seventh with the score still 4-2 but in the eighth, the Power would tie the game up. The Power would put runners on second and third on a single by Matt Green and a double by Ben Nisle. They would then get a single to bring those runners in to make it 4-4. The Bucs would then bring in closer Hayden Petrovick with only one out to keep the game tied. With a runner on first base, Petrovick would get the next batter to ground out. After a wild pitch by Petrovick to put the go ahead runner at third base, he would get the big strike out to keep the game tied going into the ninth.

Malcolm Smith would leadoff the inning for the Bucs by getting on with an error by the second baseman. After the next batter struck out, Smith would proceed to steal second base and then third base for his third stolen base of the game. In the same at bat, Smith would score from third on an error by the catcher to put the Bucs up 5-4. Petrovick would then return to the mound to and strike out two of the four batters to preserve the win for the Bucs.

The Bucs now advance to the SCCBL championship series against the San Diego Force who swept the Inland Valley Pirates in their first round matchup.

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