April 27, 2005
After losing 2-0, despite throwing a one-hitter in their previous matchup, Cactus Shadows senior Brett Jacobson knew that it would take more than a stingy defense to defeat No. 3 Notre Dame Prep.
With the 4A Desert Sky Region title within the visiting Saints’ grasp, Jacobson hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the fourth inning to help No. 4 Cactus Shadows (23-3, 10-1) beat visiting Notre Dame, 12-6, and remain in the hunt for its third consecutive region title.
Jacobson threw 6 1 /3 solid innings, striking out four batters and allowing four earned runs on five hits and two walks.
Nonetheless, Jacobson posed more of a threat offensively, finishing 3-for-3 with a home run, double and three RBIs.
"Nobody really gave me support last time, as far as runs, so everybody was trying to get out there and hit the ball," Jacobson said. "I felt that I was a little bit off in my pitching, so I wanted to get on base and have somebody drive me home. I wasn’t trying to hit a home run, but it just worked out that way."
Senior Garrett Peterson followed Jacobson’s lead with
a solo home run of his own to give the Falcons an 8-1 lead heading into the fifth inning.
Notre Dame (19-4, 10-1) made a strong push offensively as Steven Barrios drilled a three-run homer in the top of the fifth inning to put the Saints within four runs.
However, Notre Dame’s momentum was quickly quieted after Peter Bourjos hit a drive to center field which got by the outfielders.
Bourjos went all the way around the bases but was thrown out at the plate.
"We swung the bats well and we hit the ball hard, but ultimately it comes down to defense and pitching, and we made some bad pitches and costly errors," Notre Dame coach Gaetano Gianni said.
"If we play catch and throw the ball like we can and hit our location when we pitch, I’m sure the outcome would have been a little different."
Notre Dame made one last ditch effort in the bottom of the seventh inning after the Falcons’ Chad Daleiden came on in relief of Jacobson to close out the game.
With one out, Justin Cifelli and Steven Barrios hit backto-back solo home runs, but Daleiden regained his composure, getting a popup and striking out the final batter.
"We’ve developed a little bit of a rivalry with (Notre Dame) so we wanted to make up for our offensive display last game," Cactus Shadows coach Tom Scala said.
A Cactus Shadows win today against host Phoenix Greenway would force a playoff game with Notre Dame to determine the region champ.