Going on hour No. 12 for the day. Not quite running on fumes (yet) so I thought I’d bring a brief recap of Thursday’s thrilling game at Downey before I leave the office.
Maranatha blew a five run lead in the sixth and came back in the eighth to win, 15-14, over Calvary Chapel to clinch a third straight Alpha League championship. Cory Popham held an, 8-5, lead in the sixth, and as Minutemen coach Brian DeHaan said, Maranatha (21-5, 10-2) tried to give it away. The Minutemen gave up eight runs in the sixth to go down, 11-8. In the top of the seventh, Dylan Covey led off with a base hit, Popham came up with a base hit, too, and Jordan Calloway’s double scored Covey and Popham to make it, 11-10. In the eighth, Danny Beckwith led off with a base hit and Matt Chavez also got on base. Covey hit a three-run home run to help Maranatha retake the lead, 14-11. Calloway later scored on Schafer Chulay’s base hit to make it, 15-11. But Calvary Chapel (17-6, 9-3) wouldn’t go away. They scored three more runs before Covey struck out three to record the win. The bats came alive for Maranatha tonight. Chulay went 3-for-4, Covey went 3-for-5 with two home runs and Beckwith went 3-for-5 as well. “We gave them a lot of outs in the eighth,” DeHaan said. It’s unclear where Maranatha will finish in the final CIF-Southern Section Division V Coaches’ Top 10 poll. San Jacinto likely will finish on top after finishing the season with a 23-0 record. Marantha seems to have a nemesis in every sport, from football (St. Margaret’s) to baseball (San Jacinto). They beat Maranatha two seasons ago, 5-2, in the second round of the playoffs and won again last year, 3-2, in eight innings in the Division VI championship game. Despite moving up a division, DeHaan feels the Minutemen are contenders again. “I think we’re peaking at the right time. You plan your season and you hope as you end the season you peak, and for us to win three games last week and to have to win two this week and to win in the fashion that we did was just amazing. We hope to ride ride that momentum in the playoffs.” Maranatha ends the regular-season on a five-game winning streak that included a 12-2 drubbing over Calvary Chapel on Tuesday night at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Maranatha will probably be seeded three but DeHaan is hoping for a No. 2 seed. If he gets his wish, the Minutemen will play against a team that will have to advance out of the wild-card round. You can bet DeHaan & Co. will be at that game.
On a related note, the Maranatha boys and girls swimming teams are bringing home CIF titles. Here’s an early excerpt of what’s coming in Friday’s pages:
It takes more than club swimmers to win CIF-Southern Section championships.
Sure, those swimmers garner the big points in the big meets, but it’s the part-time swimmers who must come through in the clutch to win CIF-SS titles.
The Maranatha High School club swimmers did what they were supposed to do in the Division IV finals on Thursday evening at Mt. SAC, but it was the Minutemen’s lesser-known swimmers, providing key swims in the relay races, who provided the the program, in its fifth year, with its first CIF-SS title.
The Maranatha girls opened the meet with a win in the 200 medley relay and finished the meet with a win in the 400 freestyle relay. Club swimmer Isabella Schamber, a freshman, won the 200 individual medley in 2:11.04 and took second in the 100 breaststroke in 1:07.98.
Maranatha’s Jonathan Masehi-Lano won the 100 breast in 59.13 and also took second in the 200 IM in 1:57.91.