Prep Impressions: May 22, 2009

I covered the CIF-Southern Section Division I first-round baseball playoff game between Temecula Chaparral and Riverside Poly for the Riverside Press-Enterprise and came away thinking that the Bears will go as far as seniors Jake Marisnick and Blair Moore take them.

The pair, who bat 1-2 in Poly’s potent lineup, both went 3 for 4 with three runs scored as the Bears blasted the visiting Pumas 13-3 on Friday, May 22.

Marisnick (6-4, 185 lbs) led off the game with a single, hit a two-run double in the second inning and finished with three RBI after a run-scoring single in the fifth. Marisnick, the Bears’ center-fielder, has signed a letter-of-intent to attend University of Oregon.

Moore (6-3, 175 lbs) had two singles and also ripped a two-run bomb to right field in the fifth inning. Moore, the Bears’ shortstop, has signed a letter-of-intent to attend San Diego State. He is also the head coach’s son.

Both players say their futures ultimately depend on where they’re drafted.

“(Turning pro) is a possibility. We’ll see June 9,” Marisnick said.

“Depending what happens in the draft. Just see what happens and take it from there,” Moore added.

Both also want to go out as champions.

“Senior year. Go out with a bang,” Moore said. “We just talk about a five-game run. Just get hot for five game and see what happens.”

“That’s all we’re thinking,” Marisnick adds. “We just want to go team-by-team and take it one day at a time but we’re definitely looking at that championship.”

Head coach Aaron Moore has a deep, athletic team and a roster filled with some of the best baseball talent in Riverside. The Bears finished the regular season 17-10-1 overall, 10-4 in the Big VIII. They are the No. 2 seed from their league, behind area power Norco.

“Our guys were really pumped up,” Moore said following Friday’s blowout victory. “There was one thing I wanted to stress, though. And that was, we played (Temecula Chaparral) the first game of the season and we beat them 10-1 so I didn’t want the guys looking past this team. With the single elimination, anything can happen. But I was really proud of our guys.”

The Bears were the benafactors of fielding miscues/good hops and the flood gates were burst open before Chaparral even heard about an impending storm. Poly scored four runs in the first and four more in the second, taking much of the life from the Pumas dugout.

“Fast starts are always good,” Blair Moore said. “We saw that pitcher the first game of the year and he’s got really good stuff and I thought we came out and put it on him pretty good.”

“It helped just knowing what he was gonna throw and kinda have and idea of what was coming,” Marisnick said. “We threw BP left-handed and got used to it. It helped seeing him one time before and we knew we could beat him.”

Chaparral senior left-hander J.D. Voechting (6-1, 175 lbs) lasted just 1.1 innings and was tagged for seven runs — five earned — on eight hits by the Bears. His brother, junior right-hander Clayton Voechting (6-2, 170 lbs) relieved him but lasted only 1.2 innings, allowing three runs on three hits. The Pumas used four pitchers in all.

Next up for Poly is San Juan Capistrano JSerra, the No. 1 seed from its league. If the Marisnick, Moore and the Bears hit half as well as they did on this day, JSerra players better duck.

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