STOCKTON — They are one game away from their third Sac-Joaquin Section baseball title.
With Matt Trask’s bat making up for a shaky mound start, the Blue Devils scored six times in the third inning to beat St. Mary’s, 7-4, in the opener of the Division I championship series Friday at Klein Family Field on the campus of University of the Pacific.
Trask — who trailed 3-0 after an uncharacteristic second inning — rocketed a bases-clearing double in the third, giving Davis High a 4-3 lead. Trask’s blast hit off the Bank of Stockton sign, 405 feet from home plate. It cashed in John Ariola, Brett Bloomfield and Ryan Kreidler.
It was Kreidler’s bases-loaded walk that drove in Drew Gnos with DHS’ first run and set up Trask’s mash to the fence. A single by Trey Golston then put runners at the corners before a Nate Curtis hit brought in Trask and Golston came home as Curtis was out trying to steal second.
From there, Trask settled in on the mound as North Division-winning Davis (21-12-1) brought the Tri-City League second-place Rams back to earth. St. Mary’s had outscored its three previous postseason opponents 36-0.
Trask went six innings. He and closer Golston did not allow a St. Mary’s hit after that three-run second inning.
Bloomfield’s full-count single plated Jared McNece with a seventh-inning insurance run.
Now, the Delta Valley Conference runner-up reloads for a Saturday rematch at noon. St. Mary’s has to win twice to take the crown. Davis goes with Bloomfield (5-4, 2.73 ERA) while the Rams counter with Sean Jumaoas (6-2, 2.39).
Davis won section titles in 2000 and 2004. The Rams (20-14) won three straight CIF crowns (2010-12) before losing to Elk Grove last year. They have won one other and been runners-up on four times.
— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at email@example.com or 530-320-4456