LANCASTER, Calif. - The High Desert Mavericks broke a 1-1 tie with three runs in the eighth inning and held on for a 7-2 victory over the Lancaster JetHawks in Game 4 of the South Division Finals, ending the season for Lancaster.
High Desert advances to the California League Championship Series to face the Visalia Rawhide, who eliminated the Bakersfield Blaze with a three-game sweep in the North Division Finals.
Jose Hernandez started for the JetHawks and tossed seven brilliant innings. The right-hander only allowed an unearned run on six hits. He did not walk a batter and struck out one, the final hitter he faced on his 100th pitch of the night.
High Desert put up the unearned run in the second inning. Josh Morgan delivered an RBI single. The JetHawks tied the game in the fourth. Kyle Tucker led off with a single and stole second. He moved to third on a fly ball to deep center field by Bryan Muniz and scored on a wild pitch.
David Ledbetter tossed six and two-thirds innings for High Desert and allowed just the lone run on six hits. He walked three and struck out five. The JetHawks recorded leadoff hits against him in the first five innings.
Lancaster loaded the bases with two out in the seventh, but failed to score. The Mavericks immediately took advantage in the eighth, when Andrew Thome took over for Hernandez on the mound. Luke Tendler and Juremi Profar opened the frame with singles. Jose Cardona and Jairo Beras later followed with RBI singles. Carlos Arroyo added an RBI ground out.
In the eighth inning, the JetHawks again loaded the bases with two out and pinch hitter Jamie Ritchie drew a walk to make it 4-2. However, Osvaldo Duarte struck out against Nick Gardewine to end the threat.
High Desert scored four insurance runs in the top of the ninth and the JetHawks went down in order in the bottom half to end the game.
Mitt Milroy (1-0) earned the win in relief. Andrew Thome (0-1) suffered the loss for the JetHawks. Gardewine earned his second save of the series.