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Pacifics Fall in Extras Again After Historic Ceremony

On Saturday, the Pacifics overcame a three-run deficit in the ninth on Sonoma three errors, but San Rafael couldn’t recover from their own five errors, falling 7-4 against the Stompers for their eighth extra-inning loss this season.

The game, however, seemed anti-climactic after a stirring and emotional pre-game ceremony awarding the inaugural “Alexis Busch Award” to girls’ baseball pioneer Jenny Fulle.

After receiving the award for successfully suing Little League and giving girls the opportunity to play Little League baseball in 1972, Fulle led off for the Pacifics with a historic third-base ground-out against Sonoma starter Tyler Garkow.

“Her at-bat symbolized all the reasons she received the award,” a moved Pacifics President and General Manager Mike Shapiro said. “The award, named after my dear friend Alexis Busch, who was a Marin County woman baseball player and Giants bat girl, will be given each year in her name to the woman exemplifying the spirit of baseball. And just as she did in 1972, Fulle proved her courage and determination tonight.”

For his part, Garkow was brilliant for Sonoma, retiring the first 17 batters he faced, allowing one run and two hits in his eight innings of work.

“You’ve gotta give Garkow credit tonight,” Kavanaugh added.

Pacifics first baseman Jake Taylor recorded two of the Pacifics’ three total hits, breaking up Garkow’s no-hitter in the seventh. Ricky Gingras’ eighth-inning solo homer put the Pacifics on the board 4-1.

“When you’ve got more errors than hits, it’s nearly impossible to pull out a win,” said manager Matt Kavanaugh after the game. “Our defense was inconsistent, and we couldn’t deliver at the plate.”

After eight consistent innings, Sonoma’s defense unraveled in the ninth: three errors and two wild pitches from reliever Dominic Topoozian blew Garkow’s lead, giving the Pacifics a game-tying three-run rally.

After second baseman Yuki Yasuda bobbled Demetrius Moorer’s grounder, Topoozian’s two wild pitches moved Moorer to third. Taylor logged his league-leading 53rd RBI, singling through the third-base hole to cut Sonoma’s lead 4-2.

The Pacifics caught another break, as Brent Gillespie’s high popup to right bounced off Marcus Bradley’s glove, putting the tying runs at second and third. Yasuda’s wide throw to first on Gingras’ chopper drove in both runs and sent the game to extra innings.

Tied 4-4 with the International Tiebreaker Rule in play, Daniel Baptista’s fielder’s choice put the go-ahead run at third with two outs.

Garrett Granitz stepped in for Julian Esquibel, but Brennan Metzger’s seeing eye grounder drove in the winning run, bouncing past Aaron Brill into center-field.

After stealing second, Metzger came home on Juan Herrera’s two-run throwing error to Taylor at first. The fifth Pacifics error of the game upped the Stompers lead 7-4.

Brill led off the Pacifics tenth with a walk to load the bases, but three straight strikeouts from DJ Sharabi delivered the 7-4 final for Sonoma. 

The Pacifics look to salvage the last game of the series on Sunday at 1:05 PM. To conclude Women’s Weekend, the Pacifics will hold a girls’ baseball/softball clinic at 10:30 am, followed by a Homerun Derby at 11:30 am, where high schoolers will hit against former Pacifics player and San Rafael High Head Coach, Steve Detwiler.

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