Viking baseball finishes strong in last home game, beats ARC 15-7

Shane Louis, Co-editor-in-chief

The Diablo Valley College Vikings beat the American River College Beavers 15-7 in their last home game on Thursday, April 23.

The Beavers started off strong with two runs in the top of the first inning.

ARC, with two outs and two men on base, scored one run off a line drive and a second off a stolen home plate.

But the Vikings came back with five runs in the bottom of the first. With one out and the bases loaded, a single lead to two runs batted in. Two stolen bases resulted in two additional runs and another run gave DVC a 5-2 lead.

Shortstop Michael Brdar, 21, said this was important for the team to get out early.

“They scored two in the top of the first inning,” he said. “And that’s happened a lot to us and then we get down and don’t come back, but we scored five runs in our first at bat and were able to take the lead right back.”

The Vikings scored another run in the bottom of the sixth.

The Beavers made a comeback of their own in the top of the seventh. The first two ARC batters earned hits off starting pitcher Eric Crispell, at which point, the Vikings switched pitchers to Cody Ball.

Some poor DVC fielding gave ARC two runs, and Beaver’s third-baseman Austin Call earned two RBIs on a full count with the bases loaded. The Vikings answered with a triple play to shut down the inning.

But they didn’t stop there. In the bottom of the seventh, DVC kicked it into gear, loading the bases twice, taking three walks off of the Beavers and a line drive to center field that resulted in two RBIs.

With a well-timed bunt, Ryan Alley sacrificed himself to get Josh Stevens home.

Winning pitcher Crispell, 20, said this comeback was a key moment for him.

“Runs for us this year, everyone will say that they hard to come by,” he said. “It completely lifted me up and… got momentum going our way.”

Although pitcher Sam Carter started off the eighth by hitting first batter Bryan Babcock, the Vikings held the score.

The bottom of the eighth began with two strikeouts, two walks and a base hit that loaded the bases for DVC pinch-hitter Matt Fowler.

Finishing off the inning strong, Fowler hit a base hit right down the middle to bring in Stevens and Mark Castellucci, bringing the score to 15-6.

ARC made a good effort in the final inning, gaining one run, but it wasn’t enough to take over the Vikings.

Ryan Alley, 19 said, “It was my last game at home, and all my family was here, so I just wanted to do well for them and go out with a bang.”

“We’re just going to play with an up-tempo like today,” said left-handed pitcher Stephen Hantos. “And try to carry it into next season and our summer workouts.”

Hantos didn’t pitch at this game, but is looking forward to seeing the team develop.

“Pretty much just keep working hard,” he said. “We can only go up from here.”