Temecula Valley dodged a bullet earlier this week as the Golden Bears held on after giving up the lead in the sixth inning and rallied in the eighth to win their third straight Southwestern League game.
Senior Mitch Kemp doubled in AJ Sawyer who raced around the bases from first to score the eventual winning run off Mesa starter Austin Salcedo. The Bears take sole possession of first place with the victory.
Temecula Valley took an early 3-0 lead as the Golden Bears scored one in the first as Kemp knocked in senior Drew Seelman, and another in the second when David Maldonado singled in Alex Garrett. Temecula would score another in the fifth as Seelman singled and was driven home by Kyle Plantier. Kemp was named player of the game by TVHS coach Tony Nobiensky.
Trailing 3-0 to the number one ranked team in the Inland Empire, the Rams fought back and put a little scare into the Golden Bear dugout in the sixth. Sophomore Austin Salcedo led the inning off with a single and Luke Reinhart was hit by a pitch. Salcedo scored on junior shortstop Joshua Pinkava’s single. Reinhart and Pinkava would score on back to back singles by catcher Andy Thomas and right fielder Peyton Uhl.
Golden Bear starter sophomore Devin Castro was throwing strong into the sixth when he gave up three runs, but also had four strike outs along the way. Senior Jared Morton came in to relieve and got the win for Temecula Valley.
The win improves the Golden Bears to 8-1 and puts Temecula Valley in first place of the Southwestern league. They play Cyprus in a non league game Friday. The Rams are now 4-4 overall and fall to 1-2 in league play. It was a tough but satisfying loss for Murrieta Mesa who are looking forward to their next league match against Chaparral on 4/5. The Rams will travel to Placentia next to face Valencia in the first game of their Anaheim Lions tournament.