Foothill baseball shows toughness with victory over El Dorado

SANTA ANA — After suffering its most devastating loss of the season Tuesday to El Dorado in walk-off fashion, the Foothill baseball team responded with a 4-3 win over the Golden Hawks Thursday at Foothill High.

The win gives Foothill (16-6, 2-3) the season series win over El Dorado (13-10, 2-3). The teams are tied for third place in the Crestview League standings behind Villa Park and El Modena.

“I have not felt that bad in a long time for our players because they did everything they could to be resilient Tuesday,” Foothill coach Chris Price said. “They had to bring that toughness out. That’s one of the things we’ve been talking about a lot and they showed it today.”

“It was good to get back out there today after the rough day (Tuesday),” Foothill senior Brian Harbour. “We knew we were going to keep our heads up and get a win today to bring us back into the mix in league.”

The first inning was a disaster for Foothill. El Dorado’s first two hitters reached base via a hit by pitch and an error.

Brady Abner hit a two-run double to center field to give the Golden Hawks a 2-0 lead. Abner later scored on a wild pitch to extend the lead to 3-0.

Foothill starting pitcher Gavin Lauridsen settled down after the rocky first inning and kept the Knights in the game. The USC commit pitched five innings, allowed two earned runs on five hits with three strikeouts.

The Knights scored their first run in the fourth inning. Harbour hit a leadoff double and advanced to third on a fielding error by El Dorado.

Sean Green grounded out to second base which scored Harbour to cut the lead to 3-1.

El Dorado starting pitcher Travis Maxwell allowed just the one run through four innings with three strikeouts before being taken out prior to the fifth inning.

Foothill tied the game in the fifth inning when Lauridsen hit a run-scoring single and Harbour hit a RBI double. Harbour, a University of San Diego signee, went 2 for 3 with two doubles and a RBI.

“It was good being back on the field today and putting good swings on the ball to help us win,” Harbour said.

In the sixth, Green was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and advanced to second on an errant pick-off throw. After a single by Gavin Kelley, Ezekiel Vargas laid down a run-scoring bunt single to give the Knights the lead.

El Dorado’s defense managed to get a triple play to escape the inning with just a one-run deficit. Drew Nguyen and Diego Gonzalez executed a double play and first baseman Jake Vanderzee threw out a Foothill runner at the plate for the third out.

Foothill relief pitcher Adam Ujiie got the first two outs of the seventh inning and UC San Diego signee Garrett Davidson struck out the last hitter to earn the save.

“Adam has been one of those guys who is just unflappable. He comes in during giant games like this and has been dominant,” Price said. “The move was to go to Garrett if anybody reached to give them a different look. Him getting that last out was big time.”

Foothill will play Tustin in a nonleague game at Angel Stadium Friday before playing a two-game series against Villa Park next week. The Knights lost to Villa Park 3-1 on March 19.

El Dorado will play a two-game series against first-place El Modena beginning Wednesday, April 17. The Golden Hawks lost to El Modena 4-1 on March 19.

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