Pali High Baseball Edges San Pedro

Jacob Kalt slides safely into second base before Kennedy’s Branden Duarte can apply the tag in Palisades’ 7-4 loss in the Poly Classic last Thursday. The Dolphins bounced back to beat San Pedro on Monday.
Rich Schmitt/Staff Photographer

In a team huddle before the bottom of the seventh inning Monday at George Robert Field, Palisades High catcher Benji Taylor told the Dolphins not to give up.

“Guys, it’s all about passion,” he shouted. “You’ve got to want it more than them.”

Some 10 minutes later, Taylor sprinted home from third base to score the winning run on a sacrifice fly to center by Will Coquillard, who was dogpiled in front of the pitcher’s mound after the Dolphins’ dramatic 5-4 nonleague victory over San Pedro.

Cord Vanley had two strikeouts in two innings against Kennedy.
Rich Schmitt/Staff Photographer

“We had so many opportunities to win and shot ourselves in the foot,” Pali High Coach Mike Voelkel said. “When you play that first game and win you think that’s how it’s going to be and it’s not.”

Taylor and Coquillard hit RBI singles in the first inning, Julian Scissors doubled in the second and Jacob Kalt singled in the fourth for the Dolphins, who bounced back from losses to Kennedy (7-4) and Roosevelt (10-3) in the Poly Classic.

Jared Brecher pitched five innings, striking out three, and Cord Vanley threw the last two innings, with one strikeout.   

Against Kennedy, Brecher had an RBI double and Taylor added an RBI groundout in the first inning, Kent Johnson drew a bases-loaded walk in the fourth and Conrad Smith scored on a throwing error in the seventh. Lucas Braun pitched four innings and Taylor threw out three runners trying to steal.