HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. - Nick Lopez came up clutch with a go-ahead two run homer in the top of the eighth and Cole Samuels shut down the opposing offense with five strikeouts in the last two innings to help secure the 5-4 win for Santa Ana Baseball on Thursday afternoon.
Lopez went 2-4 on the day with three RBI's, providing some power in the middle of the Don lineup. The freshman infielder is now hitting .375 with three runs and four runs batted in over the first two games.
Samuels was lights out in his two and a third innings of action as he overpowered the Rustler bats. Last season, the righty started in seven of his eight appearances, going 4-2 with an ERA of 4.86. He showed the ability to perform out of the bullpen to help the Dons finish this one strong.
The win gives the Dons a 2-0 record and a chance to win the series in tomorrow's home opening double header. Santa Ana will host Golden West on Friday with the first game schedule for 12:00 p.m.