They could have exchanged home plate for a manhole cover. No Clovis High runner was going to touch it with right-hander Seth Moranda on the mound.
The 15-year-old Buchanan High sophomore pitched a four-hit gem with six strikeouts in the championship game of the Coca-Cola Baseball Classic on Saturday at Lloyd Merriman Field.
In a showdown of 8-1 teams, Buchanan blanked Clovis 6-0 for its fifth Classic title -- and first since 2006 -- in Tom Donald's 11 years as Bears coach.
Seth Batty had two of Buchanan's seven hits and was named Classic Most Valuable Player. Moranda and teammate Ryan Anderson were co-pitchers of the tournament.
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"Any time Seth takes the mound, we feel we have a chance to win," Donald said. "He did a great job, hitting his spots and mixing his pitches. And he pitched well at the end, finding a little extra gear on his fastball."
Clovis was coming off a 4-3 semifinal win against previously unbeaten Clovis West. But the Cougars were helpless against Moranda.
"Clovis is a solid club, but Seth just stifled their offense," Donald said.
Buchanan bolted to a 3-0 lead after two innings and Bryce Barger supplied the knockout punch with a two-run single in a three-run sixth. Senior Brent Etiz also made some dazzling plays at third base, Donald said.
"The difference was Seth," Donald said. "But it was a great team effort with guys coming off the bench and everyone helping out."