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BASEBALL: Los Altos Blasts Past Mt. View

Eagles unload 23 hits in De Anza victory over young Spartans.

Los Altos 20, Mt. View 5

The Star: During a sizzling start to the 2011 season, the Los Altos High baseball team’s offense has churned out quality at-bats at an alarming rate. It didn’t take long to see if they brought their red-hot sticks to the ball park on Wednesday. Los Altos hitters ripped the baseball all over the yard, started off with three straight first pitch hard hit balls to open up the action in the first inning. Los Altos put 31 runners on base during a convincing 20-5 victory over Mt. View in a Santa Clara Valley Athletic League De Anza Division matchup Wednesday afternoon at Mt. View.

The main thorn in the side of the Spartans at the plate was lead-off man Steven McLean. The Los Altos sophomore shortstop banged out a game-high five hits—Los Altos stroked 23 hits in the win—including a pair of knocks during a monster opening frame for the visitors.

The Turning Point: Los Altos (9-4, 5-1 De Anza), winners of its first four of five in league coming into Wednesday’s game, jumped out of the gates and never looked back. The Eagles scored nine runs in the top half of the first off 10 hits and one walk. With McLean and No. 2 hitter Mitch Kehlet on the bases for the majority of the game, the middle of the order had a lot of opportunities to drive in runs. Mat Snider had three hits and drove in the first run of the day off a line shot RBI double into the gap. He didn’t stay on the bases long as cleanup hitter Nolan O’ Such bombed a two-run homer to deep left field on the very next at-bat. McLean and Snider both had two hits in the opening frame.

Shuyo Chang and Kehlet also had RBIs in the first for the Eagles. Los Altos led 9-0 after one and 10-0 after three innings of play.

The Quotes: “We’ve just been getting locked in early and we showed that today,” Los Altos second baseman Mitch Kehlet said after big offensive showing from the Eagles. “I was seeing the ball really well. I think everyone was. Hopefully we keep this going. You gotta love winning.”

 Los Altos head coach Sandy Wihtol enjoyed the big start as well.

 “Even our outs were line drives today,” Wihtol said. “It’s a good group of kids. I’m really fortunate to have three of my former players on my coaching staff. It means a lot as a coach to see the kids implementing the things we’re teaching to them. They are attacking at the plate and swinging at the right pitches.”

 Mt. View (2-9-2, 0-4 De Anza), the defending SCVAL El Camino Division Champs, dropped its fourth straight league game since moving up to the higher league.

 “Los Altos can hit,” Mt. View head coach Gabriel Stewart said. “I know they’re well coached. When they keep putting the balls in play like that, you have to tip your cap. The reality is that we’re trying to learn as fast as we can. There’s some powerful teams out here (in the De Anza division). Superior firepower won out today.”

 What's Next? These two teams will meet again on Friday afternoon at Los Altos High. Mitch Kehlet will get the start for the Eagles on the bump. Los Altos will have a quick turnaround following the De Anza tilt on Friday, hosting Bellarmine Prep of the West Catholic Athletic League on Saturday afternoon.

Mt. View has a busy week of baseball coming up as well. The Spartans host Monta Vista High-Cupertino on Monday in a non-league affair before playing two games with Homestead. They also have a makeup game with Los Gatos squeezed in the middle of the home and home contests versus the Mustangs of Homestead High.

 Bottom Line: Los Altos had too much firepower on this day for the young hosts to slow down. The Mt. View roster is littered with youth. Only five seniors are on the roster and only one of those five saw significant playing time a year ago. Despite the early 10-0 hole, Mt. View strung together a nice inning in the fourth. The Spartans put four tallies in the run column, started off with an RBI single from starting pitcher Grant Appelgren. Seniors Cameron McNair and Jay van Syoc followed suit with RBI knocks of their own later on in the frame.  

The Eagles rotated several pitchers in late in the game, but still displayed the same killer approach at the plate. Los Altos put four runs on the board in the sixth and seventh to finish the contest with an even 20.

—————————

Los Altos 20, Mt. View 5

LA 9 0 1 0 2 4 4- 20 23 0

MV 0 0 0 4 1 0 0 – 5 8 3

WP: Wiechec. LP: Appelgren

Records: Los Altos 9-4, 5-1 De Anza. Mt. View 2-8-2, 0-4 De Anza.

 

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