Pitcher’s one-hitter powers Paly by Wilcox

Matthew Fogarty, Author

Paly head coach Erik Raich talks it over during a Wilcox pitching change.  Paly went on to win the contest 5-0 and clinching a SCVAL championship series birth.
Paly head coach Erik Raich talks base-running strategy over with the team during a Wilcox pitching change. Paly went on to win the contest 5-0 and clinched a SCVAL championship series birth.  Photo by Matthew Fogarty.

The Palo Alto High School varsity baseball team won a 5-0 victory over Wilcox High School today on a one-hitter, propelling the Vikings into the Santa Clara Valley Athletic League championship series.

“It’s nice to have the opportunity for another league title,” Paly head coach Erick Raich said.

After this sweep against the Chargers Paly will advance to face either Los Gatos or Saratoga in a championship series next week.

Smith, who issued three walks in the first three innings of the game, got help from his catcher, senior Austin Kron, who picked off two people in scoring position. He settled down in the latter half of the game and placed the ball where Wilcox failed to find a hit.

“We’re a really good coaching staff when he pitches like that,” Raich said. “When he throws like that, it’s a pretty easy game.”

Senior Bowan Gerould put the Vikings ahead with a two-run single in the third inning, which according to Raich, allowed Smith to attack the strike zone.

“When we got a lead, it helped him be able to pitch a little more aggressive,” Raich said.

The Vikings added to their lead with a one-run single, and later a bases loaded single from sophomore Justin Hull.

Paly’s next opponent is still to be determined, but the Vikings will take the extra day of rest Friday, and anticipate a 4 p.m. game Tuesday, location also to be determined.