Mike Miller, Ojai Valley New sports editor
As they have done all season, the Nordhoff baseball team rebounded from adversity and got right back on track with a key victory. For the fourth time this season, NHS split a season series with a Tri-Valley League opponent, this time it was with the second-place Grace Brethren Lancers.
Last Wednesday, the Lancers mowed down the Rangers in a 10-0 blowout. The game got out of hand early and the Rangers could not get anything going against senior pitcher Easton Lucas, who is 7-1 with a 0.58 ERA this season. Lucas no-hit NHS and was just one batter away from a perfect game.
Rather than dwelling on the 10-0 defeat, the Rangers came out on Friday and earned a shutout victory of their own thanks to complete game shutout performance by sophomore Parker Johnsen who is looking like Nordhoff’s next sports superstar. Johnsen went seven innings and only gave up five hits despite playing most of this season with the junior varsity squad. He struck out three batters and only surrendered two walks on the afternoon.
Unlike Wednesday, the Nordhoff bats came alive Friday led by senior Shane Hersh who laced two doubles into the outfield, knocking in three runs in the process. The University of Arizona-bound senior also scored a run for good measure.
Senior Ben Achee also helped propel the Rangers to victory with a three-for-three performance at the plate. Achee also scored two runs.
Adding to Nordhoff’s hit totals were Luke Boyd, Cody Deason, and Baylee Rogers. Junior Ryan Mahler, Boyd, and Rogers all scored runs as well.
The win improved Nordhoff’s record to 11-9-1 overall and 6-4 in TVL action. With a 6-4 record in league play, NHS is currently in third place behind St. Bonaventure (10-0), and Grace Brethren (9-3). Lurking behind the Rangers are Malibu and Carpinteria, both with 4-6 records.
This week, the Rangers will conclude their regular season schedule against St. Bonaventure with their final home game being played Thursday at 3:30 p.m.
© Ojai Valley News, 2015