By Gideon Rubin
Just two days after Cathedral Catholic was eliminated from the playoffs, the Dons remained very much alive in the national high school baseball conversation.
Left-handed Dons pitching standout Brady Aiken was tapped by the Houston Astros as the No. 1 overall pick in Major League Baseball’s amateur draft on June 5.
Aiken helped lead the Dons to within one victory of a San Diego Section Open Division championship game appearance.
He was 7-0 with a 1.06 ERA. Aiken struck out 111 batters and allowed 27 hits and 15 walks in 59 2/3 innings.
He struck out a season-high 14 batters in his last pitching appearance in an eight-inning 3-2 loss to Granite Hills on May 30 in which he wasn’t involved in the decision.
The loss dropped the Dons into the loser’s bracket of the double-elimination tournament.
The Dons, seeded No. 3 in the tournament, lost again to No. 2 Granite Hills 7-6 on June 3.
The Dons lost the rematch despite taking an early 5-0 lead after scoring four runs in the top of the first inning and one run in the third.
Granite Hills overcame a 6-3 deficit in the bottom of the seventh inning when it tallied four runs.
Aiken and Will Law each had two hits including a double and two RBI in defeat for the Dons.
Connor Lunn, who wasn’t involved in the decision, struck out six batters and allowed three runs on five hits and two walks in five innings.
Reliever Jonathan Pendergrast took the loss.
The Dons fell to 25-7 overall for the season.
Santa Fe Christian’s run in the double-elimination Division II playoffs ended with 5-4 loss to Bonita Vista on June 5.
The Eagles’ first loss in the tournament came two days earlier, 4-3 at the hands of Bonita Vista in a game that went 10 innings.
The Eagles lost the elimination game despite a spirited comeback.
The trailed 5-0 after the first inning but got back into the game with one run in the second inning, two in the sixth and one more in the seventh.
They out-hit Bonita Vista 9-3.
Cole Weaver had three hits and Gary Saggese contributed two hits, an RBI and a run scored to lead the Eagles offensively.
Dillon Paulson, who took the loss, pitched a complete game 3-hitter. He allowed five runs (three earned).
Paulson struck out six batters and allowed two walks.
In the first meeting between the two teams, the Eagles broke a 2-2 tie in the top of the 10th inning, but Bonita Vista scored two runs in the bottom of the 10th.
Paulson led the Eagles with three hits including a double and one RBI and Dean Eliott contributed two hits.
Eagles starter Cole Acosta, who wasn’t involved in the decision, struck out five batters and allowed two runs on seven hits and two walks.
Chase Bushor, who took the loss, allowed two runs (both unearned) in 3 1/3 innings of no-hit ball. Bushor struck out two batters and allowed three walks.