VISALIA, CA - Sam Lewis and Jesse Scholtens were trading zeroes on the scoreboard between the third and sixth innings. Lewis was missing bats with strikeout stuff, Scholtens was missing barrels and inducing weak contact. But it was a two-out, one-run rally by the Storm in the second inning combined with five-and-a-third no-hit innings from Scholtens that lifted Lake Elsinore (50-57/15-22) to the 3-0 win.
Lewis (L, 0-1) struck out the side in order in the second inning and fanned two hitters in the first, third, fifth, and sixth to give him a career-best 11 strikeouts on the night. His previous career-high had been six strikeouts. But Scholtens hit cruise control after walking a batter in both the first and second innings: he got Matt Jones to foul out to end the second and then retired the next 11 men that he faced in order to extend the no-hitter.
Visalia (55-52/19-18) broke up Scholtens's no-hit bid in the sixth when Ben DeLuzio legged out an infield single on a softly hit grounder up the middle. He would be left on as Scholtens would get a foul-out from Matt McPHearson and a sharp line-out from Jason Morozowski. Scholtens (W, 5-5) would leave after the sixth inning with a 1-0 lead.
Lake Elsinore would strike for two more in the seventh off of Keegan Long, who gave up both runs on two hits and two walks. Colin Poche took over to face Austin Allen with runners on second and third with two outs. On the first pitch that Poche threw, Jones back-picked Michael Gettys at second base to end the inning. Poche would set down all six men he faced tonight, striking out four.
Visalia put runners on base in the seventh and eighth innings against Zech Lemond and Jose Ruiz respectively, but advanced only one of them past first when Fernery Ozuna doubled with one out in the seventh and moved to third on a groundout.
Lewis's 11 strikeouts tied a season-best for Visalia: he now joins Jose Almonte and Bo Takahashi as the only Rawhide pitchers to register double-digit strikeouts. After Visalia's offense had been on a tear for a span of 15 games, the Rawhide have mustered just one run and ten hits over the past two contests. Only two of those hits have gone for extra bases.
Visalia will kick off a brief three-game road trip in San Jose tomorrow evening. It'll match up RHP Jose Almonte (8-7, 3.56) for Visalia and RHP Johnny Cueto (0-0, -.-) for the Giants on a rehab assignment. First pitch is at 7:05 and the live radio broadcast will be on Rawdhiebaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.