Menlo came into today's action looking to rebound after a disappointing last weekend that saw them drop three of four to Patten University. The Oaks were able to bounce back in Saturday's doubleheader against Oregon Tech, doing so in dramatic fashion. The first game of the twin bill began as a pitcher's duel, and ended up as a classic with Menlo coming away 1-0 victors.
The Oaks' Derek Martinez and Oregon Tech's Matt Bellando toed the rubber for the opener and did not disappoint. The two hurlers kept the game scoreless until the bottom of the 7th as Menlo came up with a chance to walk off with the win. Chris Mazza led off the frame with a single to left and after a strikeout by pinch hitter Will Ireton, a hit by pitch by Will Pierce, and a single to right by Coleman Cox the stage was set for Menlo catcher Ty Finley. Finley promptly lined a single to left field to give the Oaks the 1-0 walk-off victory. "I thought Coleman Cox's single to right was going to win the game, so I was just trying to pick him up," commented Finley on his approach to the pressure packed situation. "Today our team was pretty relaxed so when I came up to the plate I didn't feel the weight of the world on my shoulders. I was able to sit back and drive it hard."
Finley's game winner gave Martinez his third "W" of the season, improving his record to 3-2. Martinez has now thrown two straight complete game shutouts after blanking Patten last Saturday. For the sophomore from Palmdale, it was his positive attitude that helped him excel on the bump. "You look into the dugout and see your teammates and are just trying to do whatever you can to not let them down. I was putting everything into every pitch," claimed Martinez.The exciting win was apparently just an appetizer for what was about to ensue in the second game of the twin bill. A back and forth contest that featured two dramatic comebacks by the Owls sent the game into extra innings with the score deadlocked at six. Unfortunately because of darkness, action is forced to resume tomorrow (March 6) at 12:00pm with the game heading to the top of the 10th, and according to Oaks' Manager Matt Daily, "Our guys are fired up, they will be ready to go."