Rancho Cucamonga, CA - The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes are heading back to the California League Championship Series for the first time since 2015, as they defeated the Lancaster JetHawks by a score of 8-1 on Saturday night at LoanMart Field.
Cody Thomas had four hits, two runs scored and two RBIs, as the Quakes won their third straight playoff game to take the series, three games to one.
Rancho set the tone early, as Carlos Rincon slugged his second homer of the post-season, a two-run shot to the opposite field in the bottom of the first to give Rancho a 2-0 lead.
Stevie Berman, who finished the game with three hits, two runs scored and two RBIs, knocked in his first run of the night with a two-out RBI single against Lancaster starter Logan Longwith (0-1), making it 3-0 in the second.
Lancaster finally threatened Rancho starter Max Gamboa in the fifth, scoring a run on a Colton Welker single and eventually chasing him with two outs and the bases full.
Logan Salow came out of the bullpen and got the final out to keep it 3-1, as Alan Trejo grounded into a force-out to end the inning, leaving the bases loaded.
Rancho broke it open with a four-run sixth, as Thomas and Rincon capped the inning, each with an RBI hit, making it a 7-1 game.
Thomas wrapped up the scoring with his fourth hit, an eighth-inning single to score Berman, giving Rancho additional insurance at 8-1.
Salow (2-0), Ryan Moseley and Jordan Sheffield combined for 4 1/3 innings of scoreless relief, with Sheffield striking out the side in the ninth to send the Quakes to the Championship Series.
Rancho will await the winner of the Stockton/Visalia series, which is now tied at two games each, thanks to Stockton's win in Visalia on Saturday night. Game five in the best-of-five will be at Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton on Sunday night.
The Quakes will open game one of the best-of-five Cal League Championship Series on Tuesday night in either Stockton or Visalia. The game can be heard live on FOX Sports AM 1350 or the iHeartRadio app or the Tune-In Radio app.
Game three of the Championship Series will be at LoanMart Field on Friday, September 14th, as the Quakes, looking for their third title in franchise history, will host either Stockton or Visalia at 7:05pm. Tickets are available by calling (909) 481-5000 or online at rcquakes.com. Go Quakes!
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.