CONCORD, CA (June 18, 2022) — Like the rest of high school baseball teams, De La Salle High missed out on post-season play the past two years during the pandemic but the Spartans picked up where they left off in 2019 by stretching their undefeated playoff record to 23 consecutive victories, capped this month by winning the first-ever CIF Northern California championship.
The dramatic final win over previous No. 1 ranked St. Francis of Mountain View vaulted De La Salle to the top of the rankings and the honor of being named California’s Team of the Year for the second time in a row after the 2020 and 2021 abbreviated seasons went without a post season.
This season ended with the Spartans rallying for four runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to walk off with a 7-6 win over St. Francis.
De La Salle was not new to late inning heroics. A week earlier they won the school’s fifth straight North Costas Section title scoring three runs in the ninth inning to defeat East Bay Athletic League rival and top seed Foothill of Pleasanton 9-6. The Spartans had scored two runs in the top of the seventh to force extra innings.
Clayton Valley Charter, seeded No. 2 at NCS, was upset by Liberty of Brentwood 1-0 in the quarterfinals eliminating an anticipated Concord matchup with DLS in the semi-finals.
DLS won four NCS titles from 2016 to 2019 before sitting out the last two post seasons due to COVID-19. De La Salle has captured seven of the past nine NCS Division I championships.
Related story: De La Salle golf wins 1st state title since 2006
Jay Bedecarré is a long-time resident and writer in Concord and Clayton. He began his newspaper writing career while still a senior at Mt. Diablo High School and he has been part of The Pioneer since its inception in 2003. Jay also operates Bay Area Festivals, presenting events around the San Francisco Bay Area including Bay Area KidFest annually in Downtown Concord.