Cathedral Catholic sought out the most difficult nonleague schedule possible to prepare for the Western League and what it hopes will be a deep playoff run.
If the early returns are any indication, the Dons appear to have benefited from the experience.
The talent-rich team with seven players already committed to playing at Div. I colleges and another being recruited, went 10-4 in nonleague play, highlighted by winning the prestigious Hilltop Lolita's tournament title. They are off to a 3-0 start in league play in which they've outscored their opponents by a 44-7 margin.
In their most recent win, a 12-3 victory over Madison of San Diego on April 23, the Dons pounded out 16 hits as they rallied from an early 3-0 deficit.
Casey Husband had three hits including a triple and two RBI, and Daniel Camarena and Parker Hipp each had two hits and three RBI.
Dons starter Ryan Wilkins settled down after allowing three runs in the first inning for the win. Wilkins struck out five batters and allowed three runs on seven hits and no walks.
Torrey Pines extended its winning streak to six games as the Falcons remained unbeaten through their first five Avocado League games.
Fresh off a three-game series sweep of league rival Escondido, the Falcons won the first two of three meetings with Mission Hills of San Marcos, beating the Grizzlies 13-3 on April 21 and then 6-4 two days later.
The Falcons improved their overall record for the season to 14-5.
The Falcons set the tone early in the Mission Hills series opener, scoring three runs in the top of the first inning and then extending their lead to 7-0 with four runs in the second.
Josh Sabourin led a 19-hit attack with four hits including three doubles and K.C. Rogers added three hits with a double.
Shane Bingham, Garrett Stubbs, Joey DeNato and Evan Mason each had two hits for the Falcons, and J.J. Reading contributed a two-run homer.
Falcons starter Cole Swanson allowed two runs in five innings of three-hit ball for the win, and reliever Nate Walker pitched two innings for the save.
In the April 23 game, Torrey Pines rallied from a 2-0 deficit, tying the game in the bottom of the fourth and then 3-2 in the bottom of the fifth the Falcons wouldn't relinquish.
Bingham had three hits and two RBI to lead the Falcons, and Rogers had two hits and drove in three runs.
Falcons reliever Alex Tukey pitched 2 1/3 innings for the win.
Santa Fe Christian's six game winning streak was snapped when the Eagles lost to San Dieguito Academy of Encinitas 6-4 in a Coastal North League game on April 24.
The Eagles fell to 2-1 in league and 11-6 overall for the season.
The Eagles took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first when Nolan Gannon hit a two-run homer, but SDA answered in the bottom of the first with a five-run outburst and never relinquished that lead.
Eagles starter Luc Dewulf took the loss.
The loss followed an 8-0 victory over Tri-City Christian of Vista.
The Eagles pounded out 11 hits in support of Gannon, who went the distance, pitching a two-hit shutout in which he struck out 13 batters and allowed no walks.
Gannon, Cal Roberts and Josh Estill each had two hits.
After a nearly three-week layoff, San Diego Jewish Academy picked up right where it left off as the Lions won their third and fourth consecutive games to remain alone atop the Citrus West League.
Playing for the first time since April 2, the Lions defeated Guajome Park Academy of Vista 5-2 in a league game on April 20, and then defeated Lutheran of San Diego 7-2 in a league game the next day.
The Lions improved to 7-0 in league and 10-2 overall for the season.
David Raimi and Michael Fagan each had two hits to lead the Lions against Guajome Park Academy.
Fagan pitched a three-hit complete game for the win against Vista, striking out 16 batters and allowing four walks.
Canyon Crest Academy rallied in its last at-bat, scoring three runs to tie Parker of San Diego in a Coastal South League game that ended in a 4-4 tie after 11 innings on April 22.
The Ravens fell to 0-2-1 in league and 8-9-1 overall after a 15-4 loss to La Jolla Country Day on April 24.
James Stafford, Fernando Freire and Chris Hynes each had two hits to lead the Ravens in the Parker game.
Torrey Pines remained red-hot, opening Avocado League play with two victories.
The Falcons improved to 17-3 overall for the season after beating Escondido 8-2 on April 22 and Mission Hills of San Marcos 5-4 two days later.
Lauren Morizi and Madi Tayer each had two hits in the Escondido game as the Falcons capitalized on eight errors.
Lauren Hynes pitched a complete game five-hitter for the win. Hynes struck out six batters and allowed three walks.
Morizi had a double and two RBI and Chelsea Small had two hits to lead the Falcons in the Mission Hills game.