Postseason runs end early for MHS baseball, softball

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Seven Malibu High School baseball players were recognized on the all-league teams.

By Sam Rubinroit / Special to The Malibu Times

The Malibu High School softball and baseball seasons ended last week with losses on the road for both teams in the first round of the playoffs.

The softball team fell to Mayfield, 7-2. The Sharks had a rough start, held scoreless for five innings after allowing three runs in the first two innings. By the seventh inning, the team trailed 7-0 and finally got on the scoreboard with two runs. But the Sharks were unable to overcome the deficit.

The Sharks finished the regular season with a record of 6-4, earning the team a third-place finish in the league.

Malibu’s baseball squad lost to Bonita High School, 7-0, last Thursday. Sophomore pitcher Matt Cathcart, who was third in the league with 63 strikeouts and seven wins, was unable to get an edge on Bonita, which had 11 hits to Malibu’s six.

“It was disappointing, because we could have played better,” junior Tony Gwyn said. “I knew we’d see good teams, but I thought we had a good chance of going further.”

The Sharks (17-7 overall, 7-5 in the league) entered the postseason under head coach Paul Gallo with a second place finish in the league behind St. Bonaventure. The season included a 10-game winning streak.

Seven members of the team earned post-season recognition for their performances in the Tri-Valley League during the 2008 season. Stephen Williams, Jacob Perrin, Sean Conrad and Cathcart were first team all-league selections. Justin Hale and Gwyn were named to the second team and Jesse Conrad was an honorable mention.

Williams, a senior, led the Tri-Valley League in home runs with seven. He batted .415 with 27 RBI and 27 runs scored, all of which ranked in the league’s top five, while handling the catching duties for Malibu.

Perrin, also a senior, played shortstop and pitched for the Sharks. He posted a .306 batting average and scored 23 runs. Perrin also compiled a 5-2 record on the mound with a 2.30 earned run average and pitched Malibu’s only shutout of the season.

Sean Conrad, a junior, batted .403 with 15 RBI while playing outfield and pitching. His 12 extra-base hits ranked third in the league behind Casey Serna of St. Bonaventure and teammate Williams.

Cathcart was second in the Tri-Valley League in victories with seven wins against only two losses He tied for the league lead in complete games with four.

Hale, a junior third baseman, batted .271 with 18 RBI, good for fifth among the league leaders in that category. He had only four errors in 74 total chances at the hot corner.

Gwyn batted .302 with 15 runs scored while playing second base and shortstop for the Sharks.

Sophomore Jesse Conrad posted a .349 batting average in his first full season with the Sharks varsity team. Conrad played first base and pitched in relief for Malibu.

The team is looking to have a strong team next season. Even with the departure of seniors Jacob Perrin, Nate Schoenbrun, and Williams (who led the league with seven home runs), the Sharks still have great potential. The experienced junior class of Hale, Gwyn, Sean Conrad, Monty Biglow Travis Franz and Matt Bordier, is backed up by promising underclassmen, including Cathcart, Jesse Conrad and catcher D.J. Wolford.