Rancho Bernardo senior Gosuke Katoh, who will attend UCLA, swings a big bat for the Broncos.
S.D. Section Championships
(2) Granite Hills (25-9) vs. (1) Rancho Bernardo (29-5)
When: Saturday, 7 p.m.
Where: USD’s Fowler Park
Radio: ESPN 1700 (taped, to be heard after Heat-Pacers game and Division II game).
TV: Time Warner 411 and 4SD (taped, 8 p.m. Monday).
Outlook: Granite Hills last appeared in a championship game in 2007, beating Torrey Pines 3-2 in Division I. The Eagles lost 8-2 to Rancho Bernardo in the Division I title game in 2005. Granite Hills is led by Noah Cummings, who is hitting .437 with four homers, 12 doubles and 33 RBIs. Trenton Brooks is hitting .430 with 16 RBIs. Josh Rose (.382, 12 doubles, 28 RBIs) and Sean Walker (.352, 25 RBIs) help a potent offense. The pitching has been tested this week in two games against La Costa Canyon. Walker (6-1, 1.05 ERA), who pitched three innings Tuesday, figures to be the starter. Daniel Vasquez (6-3, 1.99 ERA) and Rose (5-3, 2.77 ERA) could also see action. Rancho Bernardo has made 10 championship appearances, winning six. The Broncos are led by Gosuke Katoh (.441, 10 homers, 13 doubles, 32 RBIs). Catcher Alex Jackson hit two home runs in a semifinal win over Rancho Buena Vista and now has 13 homers and 31 RBIs this season. Nikko Holm (.375, 31 RBIs), Matt Jervis (.368, 35 RBIs) and Preston Sands (.315, 21 RBIs) lead a powerful offense. After two games this week, a fresh Casey Henderson (6-1, 1.43 ERA) will get the start. The teams have played twice this season. RB won 6-2 on March 2. Granite Hills won 1-0 on March 16 behind Vasquez.
(9) Mission Hills (19-13) vs. (3) Madison (24-8)
When: Saturday, 3:30 p.m.
Where: USD’s Fowler Park
Radio: ESPN 1700 (taped, to be heard after Heat-Pacers game).
Outlook: Mission Hills had to win a play-in game to get to its first title game in school history. The Grizzlies are led by catcher Brandon Gullotti, who is hitting .385 with 13 doubles and 29 RBIs. He has thrown out 23 of 39 base stealers — 59 percent. Jeff Nellis (.371, 13 doubles, 13 RBIs, 17 steals) is the other big bopper in the lineup. Staff ace Roberto Johnson (7-4, 2.11 ERA) pitched seven innings Tuesday, so the starting assignment should fall to Jack Rupe (8-2, 2.85 ERA). The Grizzlies have plenty of champion experience. OF Chad Nolan and 2B Nate Delaney played on the football team, which lost in the San Diego Section finals, and on the section champion basketball team. 1B Tony Stanich also played on the basketball team. Madison is making its first title-game appearance since beating Crawford 1-0 in 1976. The Warhawks are hitting .342 as a team. Ian Clarkin (.417, 21 RBIs) leads the offense. Jacob Vermillion (.392, 13 doubles, 23 RBIs), Carson Hermosillo (.369, 27 RBIs) and Andy Villasenor (.340, 10 doubles, 18 RBIs) lead the offense. Clarkin (9-2, 0.96 ERA) is considered the best pitcher in the county, but he pitched seven innings Tuesday. So Garrett Dollarhyde (9-3, 1.68 ERA) figures to get the championship-game start.