College of Marin sophomore felt right at home on Thursday. Nick Roth made his first ever home start as he took the hill against the Yuba College 49ers on the newly opened College of Marin field in Kentfield. The pitcher struck out 12 in seven excellent innings as Marin's balanced offensive attack yielded six runs in route to a 6-2 victory. Jacob Berg, Conor Bardue and Randy Fernandez powered the offense with two hits apiece.
Roth held the 49ers scoreless in the first and gave the Mariners an opportunity to draw first blood in the bottom half. Marin's Jacob berg led off with a single and moved to second on a wild pitch. After a pair of outs, Bardue looped a single to right center that plated Berg for a 1-0 lead.
Yuba responded almost immediately as Ray Moore launched a homer to left, the first ever ball to leave the yard at the newly renovated field. The home run tied the game at 1-1. Roth bounced back for the Mariners with a pair of strikeouts as he retired the next three hitters.
College of Marin combined timely hitting and a few fielding miscues to retake the lead in the bottom of the second. Randy Fernandez led off with a triple and scored on a groundout to the second by Nicholas Caravello. The Mariners' catcher reached on that same grounder, and Matthew Lozovoy reached on an error of his own to put two on with no outs. Eric Woodrow worked a walk to load the bases for Berg who hit a sacrifice fly to plate another run. Anthony Pomilia then reached on a fielder's choice to score Lozovoy for a 4-1 lead for the Mariners.
Yuba pulled one back in the third with a two out walk and double, but Marin maintained a lead 4-2.
Roth struck out the side in the top of the fourth and the offense continued to build on their lead. They increased their margin by two more with a pair in the fourth from RBI singles off the bats of Bardue and Dionathan Cornet.
With a 6-2 lead, Roth found his groove and cruised through the seventh inning with five additional strikeouts in the fifth, sixth and seventh. Jackson Loder took the hill to start the eighth and hurled two shutout innings to finish off the game and confirm the Mariners' 6-2 victory.
Roth settled down after a few shaking innings to pitch seven strong and allowed just six hits and two runs. He earned his fifth win on the season with 12 strikeouts.
Fernandez had two hits, including a triple while Bardue had two RBI singles to power the offense.
The win pushed the Mariners record to 17-11 overall and 11-2 in the Bay Valley Conference. The Mariners look to clinch a series win over Yuba on Saturday with a visit to Marysville. First pitch is scheduled for 2:30pm.