Warriors top the Cubs as they prepare for league opener

File photo – Del Norte’s Willie Bommelyn

The Del Norte Warriors prepared for league play with a comfortable 16-4 win over South Fork in five innings in Crescent City on Tuesday afternoon.

The Del Norte boys had to overcome an early two-run deficit, but quickly settled into the game, scoring four runs in the bottom half of the first and ending the game as a contest with 10 runs in the fourth.

The victory should give the Warriors some momentum heading into Wednesday afternoon’s Big 5 opener at home to Fortuna.

“We came out ready to play,” head coach Brandon Coborn said. “It was nice to get back on the field at home after a long road trip (over the weekend) and we played with great energy.

“I’m hoping we can carry over that energy we played with today into (Wednesday’s) home league opener.”

Willie Bommelyn and Brody Mattz led the way at the plate in the win, as the Warriors improved to 6-2.

Bommelyn was 2-for-4 with three RBIs, two runs and a pair of stolen bases, while Mattz finished 2-for-2 with two RBIs and two runs.

As a team, the aggressive Warriors stole 13 bases.

Saxon Taylor also made some noise at the plate and was 1-for-1 with an RBI and two runs.

Cole Blackburn got the start on the mound and got the win, allowing one earned run on three hits and three walks and striking out six.

Sylas Sampels threw two strong innings in relied to seal the win, allowing one hit and two walks and striking out one.

The visitors started strong but were unable to keep the early momentum going.

There were, however, several bright spots, including the play of junior Broc Contreras, who has impressed recently on both sides of the plate.

The starting catcher finished 2-for-2 with a walk, a run and three stolen bases.

Junior Justin Freitas also made an impact on offense and was 1-for-1 with two walks and a run.

File photo – The South Fork Cubs

Freitas hit a lead-off triple in one inning but the Cubs were unable to bring him home.

Freshman John Stafslien, meanwhile, is making a push for more game time after hitting a double and driving in one of the Cubs’ runs.

Freitas got the start on the mound and took the loss, with Makani Buck-Zulim pitching three innings in relief.

Coborn also praised the Cubs for making the trip to Crescent City to give both teams some much-needed game time.

“A big thank you to South Fork for coming up to play his today,” he said. “They have a good team. They have some pieces they can work with, they just need some more game time.”

The Cubs, who dropped to 1-6, will play a Little 4 doubleheader at Hoopa on Saturday.

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