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Columbus Shuts Out South Dade To Remain Undefeated

Just two weeks into the high school baseball season and the Columbus Explorers have already established themselves legitimate title contenders in Class 9A. The Explorers traveled south and stifled Miami-Dade power South Dade 6-0 Thursday in Homestead.

Columbus’ pitching staff has been nothing short of dominant so far. The Explorers (5-0) have only allowed one run all season and have shutout four of their first five opponents.

Thursday it was Chris Gonzalez who kept the Buccaneer bats at bay. He tossed 82 pitches in six innings, allowing just two hits and striking out 11. Relief pitcher Chris Mederos needed just seven pitches to end the game in the seventh.

Columbus only held a two-run lead early but it proved to be more than enough. With two outs in the first inning, E.J. Doskow singled to left field scoring Joel Gonzalez to put the Explorers up 1-0. With one out in the second inning, Carlos Linares doubled that lead on a line drive to right, scoring Kevin Acosta.

The Explorer bats were silent until they exploded during a four-run sixth inning. With one out, two strikes and the bases loaded Gonzalez grounded into a fielder’s choice that drove in Seba Serralta. Columbus went ahead 5-0 after a single by Matt Alfonso and an error that allowed courtesy runner Michael Mas and Gonzalez to score. Still in the sixth, with runners on the corners, Doskow hit a single past third that plated Alfonso.

Columbus finished with 11 hits in the game and limited South Dade to just two hits, both by Willy Escala.

Doskow finished 2-for-2 with two RBIs and two walks. Acosta went 2-for-2 with an RBI, run, stolen base and a double. Alfonso was 2-for-3 with an RBI, run and two stolen bases while Serralta went 2-for-4 with a run, double and a stolen base.

South Dade (4-1) starter Ricardo Sovalbarro tossed three innings, allowing one run, five hits and a walk with one strikeout.

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