A multiday road trip ended the right way as Marin took the final game of the three-game series at College of the Sequoias. Michael Benz started for the Mariners and pitched into the eighth inning while Conor Bardue provided the power for Marin in a 5-2 victory. The freshman Bardue had three hits including his first career home run in the victory. The victory gave the Mariners a 2-1 series win in Visalia.
Both teams failed to score in the first inning but made noise in the second. With one away Bardue powered a pitch over the fence for a home run and gave the Mariners a 1-0 lead. It was short-lived however as the Giants' Donte Valdez answered with a home run of his own to tie the game at 1-1.
The Mariners went back on top in the fourth inning as Randy Fernandez led off by reaching on an error. He moved to second on a groundout and scored on a fielding error by the third baseman. Benz pitched around an error for a shutdown inning in the bottom half as Marin lead 2-1 heading to the fifth inning.
Benz continued his excellence on the mound, hurling scoreless innings in the fifth, sixth and seventh. He yielded a pair of doubles in the eighth to plate one for Sequoias but managed to get two outs before being replaced by Lozovoy who retired the final hitter of the evening.
Landen Moran led off the ninth with a double and came around to score on a fielder's choice to rebuild Marin's three run cushion 5-2. Two Giants reached with one away in the bottom of the ninth but Lozovoy kept them from coming around with a shallow fly out and a strikeout to end the threat and the game.
The victory went to Benz, his first of the year as he threw 7.2 innings allowing two runs and seven hits while striking out seven. Lozovoy earned his second save the year by getting the final four outs.
Bardue had three hits including a home run and a stolen base in the game. Barkocy had three hits and two RBI while Landen Moran added two hits and a run scored.
The victory was the Mariners fourth of the season in ten tries. Next up is a road game at Diablo Valley College as Marin looks to close out a season sweep of the Vikings on Wednesday, February 13th at 2pm.