FAIRFIELD — A pitching dual was the direction this cross-town rivalry decided to go – only needing one run for a victory.
The last time the Armijo High baseball team saw Fairfield was March 5 in a 13-1 victory. This time around, the Indians managed a 1-0 decision over the visiting Falcons at Dave Marshall Field, Friday.
David Hostler pitched a complete game for Armijo (3-5), amassing 11 strikeouts while allowing just two hits and two walks.
Hostler gave up his first hit in the top of the first to Fairfield’s Damien Gustefsen. Hostler went through next nine batters, striking out four before Gustefsen came up again and walked. After that walk, Hostler struck out six in a row.
“We are a team built on pitching and defense,” Indians coach Mo Terrell said. “As long as we can get good pitching, which we have been all season long, and we can play strong defense behind that, we’ll be in all the games.”
About his performance, Hostler said his off-speed pitch and defense was solid.
“I use my fastball to get ahead and then my curveball,” he said.
Although the Indians came away with the victory, Fairfield (0-6) had plenty to take away from the game.
“This is the first time I lost a game that I was actually proud of,” Falcons coach Willie Bible said. “I was so excited to see them play the way I know they can play.”
John Jones pitched a complete game for Fairfield, giving up one run on four hits with six strikeouts.
The one run was given up in the home-half of the fourth as Antonio Ramirez led the inning off with a single up the middle.
Jones got two outs after that but gave up a single to Chris Parodi that fell in shallow right-center, bringing in Ramirez, who was on second after a stolen base.
The hits kept coming for the Indians as Clayton Espino, who singles to center field, moving Parodi to third.
Jones kept his cool for the Falcons, though, striking out Jared Borunda to end the inning and leaving Armijo with two men in scoring position.
Hostler’s heroics were not limited to his pitching as he ended the game thanks to his defense.
Giving up a lead-off single to Stevie Arias to begin the seventh, Hostler caught a popup on a bunt attempt by Anthony Canavasio and threw it back to first to complete a 1-3 double play.
The last out was a slow-roller from Fairfield’s Jones back to Hostler, who tossed it to first to end the game.
“It’s a big win for the kids and the school anytime you play a cross-town rival,” Terrell said. “I know (Fairfield) hasn’t won a game yet, but they’re getting there. They’re a lot better than the last time we played them.”
Bible looks forward to the rest of the season after this game.
“The guys we’ll see a second time around will see a whole new team,” the coach said.
Both teams will be on the road for their next games, with Fairfield traveling to Deer Valley in Antioch and Armijo will be at Vintage, both on Tuesday.