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Baseball Makes Playoffs After a Terrific Season

Boys baseball won their 15th Channel League title to clinch a spot in Division III playoffs. The Dons went a total 18-6 overall and 10-4 in the Channel League. The Dons played against the Mission Viejo Diablos May 3 at home for the start of Division III CIF playoffs. Not only has the team’s determination and continuous hard work led them to the CIF playoffs, but this led the Dons to take back the Channel League title as well. Baseball has had many memorable games this season such as the San Marcos games at home and both Ventura games.

Coach Steven Schuck was questioned in a pregame interview about the game. Schuck stated, “We are back where we belong,” in response to their Channel League title. Coach Schuck’s favorite games this season were the SM game at home or the Ventura game away, when they were down two runs in the seventh inning and came back on top to beat the Cougars. Schuck states the players who have made an impact this season are pitchers Zeke Adderley and Kaden Spencer on the mound, as well as sophomore catcher Derek Jaye who wasn’t expected to play this season, but truly stepped up. Big changes that were made for the playoff game against Mission Viejo included two freshmen playing on the field due to regular players’ injuries. One freshman played left field and the other who played first base. Schuck commented that, “Having two freshmen and two sophomores in the starting lineup is pretty big.” In response to the overall season, Coach Schuck states the team took a couple steps back for a couple weeks, but are now back in full force. 

Two seniors, Michael Firestone and Liam Keithley, were questioned in regards to the playoff game and overall season. Firestone, who will continue his baseball career at Santa Barbara City College, says he was most excited for better competition in the playoffs and had high hopes for games that would come down to the wire. In regards to how their regular season went, Firestone says, “I’m really proud of the way the team performed this year… We achieved our two biggest goals which were to win the Channel League and beat SM and DP out for the city record. We did just that.” Senior Liam Keithley, who plans to attend Cal Lutheran University to further his baseball career, stated that the Dons were focusing on having fun with the playoff game against Mission Viejo and having fun as a team overall. Both Firestone and Keithley are happy with how they secured that Channel League title. Firestone states, “Because everyone cared so much about winning Channel [League], when we did it, it felt like a massive weight off our shoulders.” Keithley noted, “I am very happy with the team and our performance to win [the] league. We had a few hiccups but we didn’t want it to be an easy win anyways.”

Michael Firestone up at bat against Mission Viejo. Image Credit: Viviana Ruiz

The Dons battled well against the Diablos leaving the game scoreless on both sides. They were tied 0-0 until the fourth inning. The Diablos added to the board 1-0 in the beginning of the fourth inning due to an error from first to third base. In the sixth inning, the Diablos had two more runners come home to make the score 3-0. The Dons made a pitching change from Zeke Adderley to senior Adriano Martinez to finish the game. During the 7th inning, bases were loaded with the Dons on all bases, but sadly the on-base Dons weren’t brought home. The Diablos beat the Dons 3-0, ending the Dons playoff run. Though they lost, the Dons have played great all season and held their own for most of the playoff game. With the continuous hard work and dedication this team has, next season is looking promising.

Dons at home against Mission Viejo. Image Credit: Viviana Ruiz


  • Viviana Ruiz

    Viviana Ruiz is a junior who is from Santa Barbara. She likes to write in the forge because she is able to write what she is interested in.

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