By Ray Hamill — The Crusaders are the favorites to win this year’s North Coast Section Division-6 baseball tournament and they certainly looked like it on Wednesday.
The St. Bernard’s boys comfortably took care of business against an outmatched Tomales team in a quarterfinal at Crusader Field and cruised to a 12-0 win in five innings.
The victory sets up a rematch with Little 4 rival South Fork in Saturday’s semifinal after the Cubs defeated San Domenico 9-4 in their quarterfinal on Wednesday.
St. Bernard’s junior pitcher Tyler Dimmick worked well with junior catcher Tyson Meyer in the win, as the Crusaders held the Tomales bats to just one hit.
Head coach Matt Tomlin, however, felt his players could have had a better approach offensively.
“I thought we had really good pitching and defense, but I didn’t think we had a very good approach at the plate,” he said. “I just think collectively we didn’t have a very good approach and we’ve got to clean that up for Saturday.”
The Crusaders took control of the game with four runs in the bottom of the first inning, three of them scoring on a two-out Meyer triple.
They would add eight runs in the fourth to end the game as a contest.
Dimmick pitched four innings for the win, allowing one hit and one walk and striking out seven.
“I was really happy with our battery,” Tomlin said. “Pitcher Tyler Dimmick and catcher Tyson Meyer, that’s our future for next year.
“I thought Dimmick was outstanding on the mound.”
Meyer got the start behind the plate and threw out the only Tomales runner to attempt to steal second.
Drew Vizenor also had a big game and finished 3-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs.
“Drew Vizenor has been so consistent for us all year,” Tomlin said.
Braeden Zimmerman also had a triple and scored twice, while Aidan Dorsch and Cayden Lee each had a hit to round out a seven-hit team performance.
The Crusaders reached base six times on a hit-by-pitch, including three straight to lead off the bottom of the third inning and load the bases.
However, they were unable to take advantage of it when two base runners were tagged out at home plate on back-to-back plays.
Lee pitched one inning in relief of Dimmick and struck out three straight batters to seal the win.
With the victory, the Crusaders improved to 22-4 on the season.
Saturdays’s semifinal is set for 1 p.m. at Crusader Field.