The baseball team is known for its deep and talented pitching staff. And it was on display once again Tuesday in the second round of the North Coast Section Championships.
But make no mistake about it: The depth of talent in the batting order was just as important in the top-seeded Mustangs’ 3-1 win home win over Moreau Catholic of Hayward.
Senior , the No. 7 hitter in the San Marin lineup, came through with a pair of run-scoring hits early in Tuesday’s game, giving pitcher a nice cushion during his complete-game effort.
“Forrest has done a very good job. Once I put him in the 7 spot, he came through all year long for us,” San Marin coach boasted. “I have a lot of confidence in him.
“I think we have a very strong order 1-thru-9."
The Mustangs figure to need all bats clanging Wednesday when, weather permitting, Sonoma Valley visits for a 5 p.m. semifinal game.
San Marin suffered a 3-2 loss to the Dragons on May 11. The Mustangs got eight hits – three by – and stole five bases – two by Bousquette -- in the game, yet mustered just two runs on Sonoma Valley’s home field.
“We just kind of let that one slip away,” Whitburn admitted of a game San Marin led 2-0 going to the bottom of the seventh inning. “ pitched a great game. Then within a short period of time, it just got away from us really quick.
“Hopefully we can come right back out and get some timely hits.”
Smith figures to earn the start once again, looking to duplicate Driscoll’s effort against Moreau Catholic. The Mustangs will have and available, if needed, in relief.
“Nick was in command from the get-go. I thought he pitched his best game of the season,” Whitburn observed. “Once we got the lead, we had the attitude we weren’t going to surrender it.”
Like Tuesday’s quarterfinals, the Mustangs will get to play the semifinals on campus, even if the home-field advantage isn’t quite what it was during the San Marin basketball team’s run to the NCS crown in the winter.
“Basketball was different because it was the first time they’d won North Coast section. The electricity of being in a small gym really helped the team along,” Whitburn observed. “In baseball, we usually don’t get very big crowds. And we’ve had a little more success, so it’s not a novel thing for us anymore.
“I guess things get a little complacent.”
That wasn’t always the case, the longtime coach recalled.
“In 1982, the school had never won anything in baseball,” he said. “We won league and NCS that year.
“I remember playing at Albert Park. The place was packed. When I was watching basketball this year, it kinda reminded me of our ‘82 season.”