Lincoln's rally cools off Placer

Zebras take command in PVL baseball title race
By: Todd Mordhorst Journal Sports Editor
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Lincoln High baseball coach Troy Peterson did not hesitate to send senior Jordan Albarron out to the mound for the biggest game of the season in the Pioneer Valley League. Albarron responded on the mound, and at the plate in leading the Zebras to a 5-1 win over Placer at James Field Tuesday afternoon. Albarron tossed a complete-game five-hitter to cool off the Hillmen, who had won five in a row. Placer (7-5 PVL) had a chance to tie Lincoln for the league lead, but fell two games back with three games left. The Zebras will return to James Field on Thursday looking for a season sweep of the Hillmen. Placer senior A.J. Sanchez dueled with Albarron through the first four scoreless innings. Lincoln?s potent bats caught fire in the fifth. Julio Martinez sparked a four-run rally with a leadoff single. Freshman Isaiah Garcia stroked a two-run single to break the deadlock. Two batters later, Albarron crushed a two-run double. Albarron?s only slip-up came in the sixth when he left a fastball out over the plate and Eddie Vanderdoes crushed it over the fence in center field. The Hillmen stranded three runners at second base and Albarron picked off two at first base to thwart potential rallies. ?We were hungry for this game,? Albarron said. ?Everyone doubts us, but we like to be in that position to prove people wrong.? James Pallas jacked a solo home run to left field to finish off Lincoln?s scoring. It was more than enough for Albarron. ?He?s a big game pitcher,? Lincoln coach Troy Peterson said. ?He doesn?t get rattled. This was his fourth complete game of the season for us and he?s been really good every game. The rest of the team came together and got the job done.? The Hillmen got singles from Kevin Giles, Michael Reale, Austin LeBleu and Casey Yunk. Kevin Harcus tossed two innings of scoreless relief as Placer lost for the first time since April 10.