Southern California Renegades' Jacob Mesa pitches no-hitter against Colton Nighthawks to keep team's Connie Mack World Series hopes intact
FARMINGTON — Jacob Mesa was unhittable for the Southern California Renegades in Game 13 of the Connie Mack Worlds Series this morning at Ricketts Park.
Mesa mixed in a good fastball with a plethora of off-speed pitches to silence the Colton Nighthawks’ bats en route to an 8-0 win for the Renegades. The game ended after six innings via the run rule, and the loss eliminated the Nighthawks from the series.
"He’s a great off-speed pitcher who commands the zone, and he threw great," Renegades coach Si Pettrow said of Mesa. "He commands the zone with his off-speed pitches and has a good enough fastball to get it by guys."
Colton coach Ruben Montano said Mesa’s curveball was the best his team has seen all summer.
The right-handed Mesa said he was unaware of the no-hitter during the game and didn’t realize the accomplishment until after the game when his teammates congratulated him.
"I was in the zone the whole time," Mesa said. "I was in the dugout, and after the last play, everyone rushed me and said congratulations. I had no idea what was going on until they told me."
The Nighthawks, out of Colton, Calif., struggled on the mound early and gave up four runs in the bottom of the first. The Renegades, based in Huntington Beach, Calif., singled and drew a walk to lead off the inning, then saw Nathan Webb triple to deep center to record two runs.
In the next at-bat, Blake Sabol drove in Webb to make it 3-0. Then, after a Colton error, the Nighthawks (1-2) walked the next three batters to push one more run across for the Renegades.
The Nighthawks’ issues on the mound created problems for the team throughout the day. During the game, Colton’s pitchers combined to walked 10 batters.
"We just couldn’t get it together," Colton’s Montano said. "It was the whole staff in general. We needed to do a better job than we did, but that’s the way it goes."
The Renegades (2-1) added one run in the third on a Jake Lopez sacrifice fly that ended with Sabol sliding into home just under the tag. SoCal had a chance to add more in the inning, but left the bases loaded.
Despite not getting a hit in the fourth inning, SoCal added to its lead. After a lead-off walk and an error, the Renegades had runners on second and third with no outs. Sabol came through with another RBI to extend the lead to 6-0. A few batters later, Lopez hit another sacrifice fly, this time to right field, to drive in another run. But for the second inning in a row, the Renegades struck out with the bases loaded to end the inning.
It’s weird. It’s a habit for us," Pettrow said of the Renegades’ struggles with leaving runners on base. "In a tournament like this with so many good teams, you have to score those runs. Fortunately, today we got some key hits to get some runs, but we did leave a lot of guys on base."
The final run of the game came in the bottom of the sixth when Lopez singled to score Delgado from third.
SoCal advances to the world series’ fourth round and will play the Midland Redskins (2-1) at noon Wednesday at Ricketts Park.
Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.
Leading hitters: Nathan Webb, 1 for 4, 2 RBIs, R. Jake Lopez, 1 for 1, 3 RBIs, BB
WP: Jacob Mesa
LP: Emilio Gugliemelli