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Perez, Bethancourt lift Bulldogs over Eagles, 4-1

By: Brett Ransford/Telegraph Correspondent
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Cross-town baseball rivalries were renewed in Folsom on Saturday afternoon. It took three years, but Folsom High won their first game against neighborhood rival Vista del Lago, 4-1. The Eagles defeated Folsom last year, 14-3, and in 2010, 10-6. A battle of sophomore pitchers went to Folsom’s Alex Perez, who tossed a five-hit complete game, holding Vista to one run. “I felt pretty comfortable. I was hitting my spots in the bullpen and it all translated on the field,” Perez said. “It’s a real confidence booster, beating our cross-town rivals and all. It really gives us confidence throughout the season.” Dom Bethancourt’s RBI single in the first inning gave the Bulldogs an early one-run lead, before Vista tied the scored in the fourth when Ryan Rodriguez scored on an RBI single by Nick Scolini. Rodriguez had reached base on a double and nearly picked up an RBI of his own, but Wyland Silvan was thrown out trying to score. Scolini and Rodriguez each had two hits, while Brady Hein had the other. A duo of Vista sophomore pitchers, Tyler Kaim and Josh Pfeffer, competed opposite Perez. Each gave up a pair of hits in the fifth inning – none bigger than Matt Maasberg’s two-run double to clear the bases on the first pitch thrown by Pfeffer, who came in to relieve Kaim. The Eagles, 1-3 on the season, scored one run or less in two of its three losses this season. Coach Scott Seffens said his team is still working out the early-season kinks. “You have to turn and go middle against that guy [Perez] and we knew what to do, but it’s just a work in progress,” Seffens said. “We still have most of our lineup intact. We’ll see if some guys continue to struggle and if we need to make some changes.” Folsom, 3-1 on the year, won its second consecutive game following an 11-1 win over Foothill on Wednesday. The Bulldogs scored about 10 runs in half their games so far. To boot, they tout a young lefty in Perez, who appears comfortable in his first two varsity starts. “[Perez] has stepped up. He had some real pressure situations and didn’t show the ware at all,” said Folsom coach Gilbert Brewer. “He was solid. Offensively, our guys set the table for each other today. We’re not going to beat teams 10-0. We’re going to grind it out. We’re grinders.” Folsom grinds on next week hosting Grant on Monday. Vista travels to River City on Tuesday and plays host to El Dorado on Thursday. Note: Vista freshman Matt Jimison was in the starting lineup against his father, a Folsom assistant coach. Jimison remained hitless, but remains a key part of a young Vista lineup going forward.