Prep Preview: Cantwell-SH at Woodcrest Chr.

I’m covering the Montebello Cantwell-Sacred Heart vs. Riverside Woodcrest Christian CIF-Southern Section Division 5 Championship Game tonight, Saturday, June 4, 2016, for The Press-Enterprise/(@PEcom_preps) and the Southern California Newspaper Group/(@SoCalNewsGroup).

First pitch is set for 7 p.m. PT at the UC Riverside (Calif.) Sports Complex.

CantwellLOGOTHE LOW DOWN:
Cantwell-Sacred Heart (29-4 overall) has put together a winner in just three seasons since hiring Larry Patino, an accomplished national travel ball coach. The Cardinals were just 5-17-1 the season before his hiring, 63-28 since. Brother Zachary and Jared Thomas are powering this season’s team to new heights. Zachary, a sophomore topped the Cards with a .443 BA and 35 hits in 22 games. Jared, a freshman, hit .434 with a team-leading four HRs and 24 RBI in 25 games.

WoodcrestChrLOGOWoodcrest Christian (28-5) is looking for its third CIF-SS title since 2010, and is loaded with perhaps its greatest collection of talent since ’10. Coach Glenn Prater’s decision making has never been sharper, aided by the overwhelming talents of sophomore Branden Boissiere and freshman Jordan Keller, both of whom hit better than .400 with more than 25 RBIs apiece. Boissiere, who got the save in the 2-1 win over Hemet Tahquitz in the semifinals, will likely get the start tonight.

THE KEY PLAYERS:
Cantwell-Sacred Heart
— SS/OF Javy Espinoza, Fr. (5-foot-9, 155 pounds); P/1B Andrew Quillen, Sr. (5-9, 200); C Jared Thomas, Fr. (6-foot, 170); 3B/P Zachary Thomas, Soph. (6-foot, 175); 2B Elijah Vazquez, Jr. (5-9, 180)

Woodcrest Christian — OF/C Trevor Berl, Sr. (6-foot-1, 175 pounds); OF/P Branden Boissiere, Soph. (6-foot, 180); 1B/P Christian Hammar, Sr. (6-foot, 180); 3B/P Jordan Keller, Fr. (6-3, 175); P Adam Zellers, Sr. (6-3, 220)

THE DIFFERENCE:
Woodcrest Christian’s pitching, again. The Royals have a plethora of arms, easily the greatest collection of pitching in Division 5 this season.

THE FINAL SCORE:
Woodcrest Christian 5, Cantwell-Sacred Heart 3

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