They had to make it interesting though.
Trailing 6-3 through four innings, and only managing four hits through that span, the Giants got their bats going for the final three innings of play and rallied for a 9-6 triumph over the second-seeded Astros at Golden Eagle Regional Park.
With one out in the top of the fifth, Josh Bolingbroke ripped a stand-up triple to right field. Back-to-back walks to Owen Bartlett and Drew Peterson loaded the bases and ended Astros starting pitcher Jared Longland’s outing after 4 1-3 innings.
Austin Garrick came on in relief and immediately struck out the first batter he faced for the second out. However, he couldn’t stave off the Giants rally.
Joseph Hansen blooped a two-run single into shallow center field. When the throw went to the plate, the runners moved up to second and third with the deficit now only 6-5.
Michael Schroeder smoked a single through the left side of the infield, driving in both runs, leaving the Giants in the lead, 7-6.
Peterson continued his strong performance on the mound, keeping the Astros off balance in five innings of relief work.
Peterson faced the minimum six batters in the fifth and sixth innings, while his team took the lead for good and added insurance runs in the sixth and seventh frames.
Dylan Stanley led off the top of the sixth with a double down the third-base line and scored thanks to consecutive groundouts to second base.
In the seventh, Bartlett walked to start the inning. Two batters later, Morgan Christen’s fly ball to left field was deep enough to score Bartlett on a sacrifice fly, making it a 9-6 ballgame.
The Astros tried to mount a comeback in the bottom half of the seventh.
With runners on first and second after a walk to Dustin Weis and a single by Trevor Hampshire, Peterson got the next two batters out to earn the pitching victory.
The Giants scored first, but the Astros always had an answer in the early going.
After Peterson launched a two-out solo homer in the first inning, the Astros tied the game up at 1-1 in the bottom of the second when Matt Perera and Anthony Tolosano traded places on the basepaths with an RBI double from Tolosano.
A two-run rally by the Giants in the third put them up 3-1. The first run came home on a wild pitch and Peterson drove in another with a sac fly.
But the Astros claimed their first advantage by pushing across four runs in the bottom of the third.
An RBI single by Hampshire, a bases-loaded walk and a two-run single to the opposite field by Perera handed the Astros a 5-3 edge.
The home team extended its lead to a game-high 6-3 margin in the fourth on Longland’s run-scoring base hit to left field, plating Garrick after he had hit a liner that got away from the Giants left fielder.
But that was as good as it got for the Astros, who needed to win two games Saturday night to take the city championship in the double-elimination tourney.
•In the Prep Division championship, the Padres used a three-run second inning and never trailed against the top-seed Yankees, holding on for a 5-3 victory.
The Padres scored two more runs in the top of the seventh that proved to be necessary.
The Yankees chipped away at the lead with a single run in both the third and fifth innings, but they could only muster one more run in the bottom of the seventh.
Despite entering the tournament as the No. 2 seed, the Padres stayed in the winners’ bracket and only needed to win once Saturday to take home the trophy.