Top Speed Wins 2016 GSCBL Championship
by Christoph Ludwig
And that’s all folks. Top Speed Baseball has won back-2-back Golden State Collegiate Baseball League titles after taking the first two games of a best-of-3 championship against the San Francisco Seagulls.
In game one of the GSCBL championship, Top Speed overcame a 2-1 deficit to walk off in the bottom of the ninth with a 3-2 win. Their path was much easier in game two, as they scored six runs in the first three innings to propel themselves to a 10-4 victory.
-In the bottom of the ninth, Cody Erickson (Tennessee Wesleyan) hit a single to right to score Drew Taylor (Augusta University) and give Top Speed the walk-off win. Grant St. Martin (Sonoma State) tied the game at 2 earlier in the inning with a mammoth home run to left field
-The Seagulls scored on a solo home run by Paul Murray (Western Kentucky) and an RBI groundout from Dalton Pizzuti (San Francisco State)
-Diego Ibarra (Tennessee Wesleyan) held the Seagulls to two runs on seven hits in eight innings of work while striking out nine. Bret Bowyer (College of Marin) picked up the win after throwing a scoreless ninth
-David Moody (Hawaii-Hilo) started for the Seagulls, holding Top Speed to one run on four hits in five innings of work. Dominic Dumalo (Grand Canyon) allowed one run in three innings of relief, and Justin Eclavea (Bloomfield College) took the loss, allowing the winning run
-Ryan Schalch (University of the Pacific) led the Top Speed offense, driving in four runs, including a key three-run double in the second inning to kickstart their scoring. Taylor homered and had three RBIs, and Nick Rau (Augusta University) and Ryan Whitt (King University) each added two hits
-Mario Morales (Campbellsville University) picked up the win, holding the Seagulls to one run on three hits while striking out eight in 6.2 innings of work. Logan Overly (William Penn University), Chrit Rudkin (College of Marin), and Jake Pannunzio (Campbellsville University) finished out the win
-St. Martin doubled and walked and scored two runs. He was named the GSCBL playoffs Big Stick Award winner, presented by SAM BAT
-Nathan Pisciotta (San Francisco State) took the loss, allowing four runs in just 1+ inning
-Kai Haake (Mission College) led the Seagulls offense with two hits and two runs scored. Paul Murray (Western Kentucky) and Lance Montano (University of Rio Grande) doubled, and Tyler Harry (Cabrillo College) had two RBIs
Top Speed Baseball had a another season for the ages, finishing 47-4 overall, and dominated the GSCBL, going 41-3 in league play. They lost back-to-back games just once. Eight college seniors signed professional contracts, with Jackson Zarubin signing Free Agents with the Los Angeles Angels, Casey Brown going to the Normal CornBelters of the independent Frontier League, Corey Sessions & Jake Pannunzio both signed with the Southern Illinois Miners of the Frontier League, Matt Martinez & Mario Morales both signed with the Joplin Blasters of the American Association League, Nick Rau signed with the Lincoln Salt Dogs of the American Association League and Diego Ibarra signed with the Texas AirHogs also of the American Association League. The Speedos are currently ranked fifth in the country, according to the Collegiate Summer Baseball rankings.
The runner up the SF Seagulls finished with an overall record of 31 wins and 20 losses in the GSCBL, which 7 of the loses came against Top Speed Baseball. The 31 wins was a franchise record for the Seagulls.