Rocklin edges Woodcreek in pitcher's duel

Fielding limits T-wolves to two hits
By: Brett Ransford, Press Tribune Correspondent
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Sam Anderson turned in a strong pitching performance for Woodcreek Monday in Rocklin, but it unfortunately came on a day when he was matched up with Rocklin ace Matt Fielding. Behind another shutout performance by the strong southpaw, the Thunder beat the Timberwolves 2-0 in a Sierra Foothill League battle. Fielding set down the first nine Woodcreek hitters and had four strikeouts in the first two innings on his way to fanning eight Timberwolves in the contest. Anderson’s style was different, but the results were similar, as he threw six innings with one strikeout, three walks and allowed just the two runs. Rocklin loaded the bases in the first inning, but the Woodcreek right-hander got a double play to escape trouble. Two Woodcreek miscues allowed the Thunder to post the game’s first run in the second stanza and Rocklin tacked on its second run in the sixth. Both runs scored in two-out situations. In the sixth, Kyle Garvella doubled down the third-base line with one out and advanced to third on a groundout. Left-handed batter Nick Williams’ RBI double into left field brought in Garvella with the insurance tally. “It was kind of a sluggish day, but when you’re playing a team that’s struggling you have to come in focused,” Fielding said. “I just took it one batter at a time. If one guy got on I didn’t worry about it too much until he gets into scoring position. We have a lot of depth in our pitching rotation and a lot of confidence in each guy that’s throwing that day.” Fielding hardly had to worry about runners in scoring position because it only happened once in the entire game. The closest Woodcreek came to bringing in a run was in the fourth when freshman Stephen Nogosek was on third with two outs but a ground ball ended the inning. Nogosek had both Woodcreek hits in the game. “We did have some quality bats today, made some contact and we played defense,” said Woodcreek coach Kelly Mayo. “We only had a couple of hits and opportunities to score, but Rocklin had the same thing. We tried to make [Fielding] throw some pitches early and go after him. He’s a really good pitcher and made some great adjustments. Our kids stepped up and showed some pride today. It’s the first I’ve seen it all year.” Rocklin has won its last four games, including two shutout victories and a 10-run defeat of Del Oro. Head Coach Roc Murray said Anderson kept his batters off balance, but noted the edge had to go to Fielding. “I didn’t think (Anderson) would come back and throw strikes but he threw a lot of pitches today made it all the way through it,” Murray said. “Fortunately we had a guy throwing on the hill who is pretty good as well. We have an uphill battle with a lot of people in the way just like these guys from Woodcreek. They’re not going to make it easy on us. It’s just the Sierra Foothill League.” The three-game series was scheduled to resume Tuesday at Woodcreek and conclude with a game Thursday back in Rocklin.