Crusaders make it eight straight playoff wins

Photos by Ray Hamill/ – St. Bernard’s Luke Brunton slides successfully home for one of his team’s runs on Saturday.

The St. Bernard’s Crusaders will try to add to their record 14 North Coast Section baseball championships in next week’s Division-6 final after beating Point Arena 7-1 in Saturday’s semifinal.

The Crusaders, whose most recent section crown came a year ago, will take on Little 4 rival Ferndale in the championship game after the Cats rallied to win their semifinal 6-5 over San Domenico.

The Crusaders started fast against the Pirates and scored all seven of their runs in the opening three innings to lead 7-0.

And that would prove to be enough for pitcher Tyler Dimmick and his defense, who shut out the Point Arena bats for the opening six innings.

The visitors would get on the board with a single run in the top of the seventh inning, but it was too little too late against the top seeds in the Division-6 bracket.

Dimmick gave up just one unearned run on three hits and no walks and struck out 11, before freshman Michael Manzi came in to close out the game.

Six different Crusaders accounted for eight team hits, including a pair of hits each for the two pitchers.

Dimmick finished 2-for-2 with two runs and two RBIs, while Manzi was 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and scored three runs.

Seth Brunton, Luke Brunton, Mateo Gutierrez and Tyson Meyer each also had a hit in the victory, with the Brunton brothers both scoring a run and Gutierrez and Meyer each driving in a run.

Brayden Luna and Tyler Maples each also drove in a run in the win, as the Crusaders improved to 19-8 and stretched their playoff winning streak to eight straight games.

The NCS decider is tentatively set for next Saturday at 1 p.m at Crusader Field.

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