Santa Monica High’s Terry Wilson is a superb outfielder.
“He’s one of the best centerfielders you’re going to see in high school baseball,” said Viking coach Rob Duron. “And we’ve been working with him to take level swings so he can take advantage of his speed on the bases.”
But Wilson didn’t have to run the bases swiftly on Tuesday, April 22. He hit a grand slam home run, a line drive over the left field fence, to trigger Samohi’s 10-1 victory over Morningside.
“He took a nice, level swing and I knew the ball was going out,” said Duron.
Wilson is related to former Samohi football and baseball star Charles Gordon, who went on to Kansas and is now a defensive back with the Minnesota Vikings. Like Gordon, Wilson also has played football at Samohi.
Samohi defeated Morningside again two days later, 2-1, to become 6-0 in the Ocean League, entering the final two weeks of the league schedule in first place.
The remaining games will be two each against the league’s other first division teams, Beverly Hills and Culver City. But Beverly Hills became the only one of the trio to lose to a second division team when it was defeated by Hawthorne.
Culver City is 5-1 in the league and Beverly Hills is 4-2. They split their two games against each other.
Samohi won two games each from Hawthorne, Inglewood, and Morningside to improve its playoff chances and also moved its overall record into positive territory – 11-10 – following an extremely slow start.
In last week’s games, Culver City defeated Inglewood, 7-3 and 16-1, and Beverly Hills followed a 7-3 loss to Hawthorne by defeating the Cougars, 3-1.
Once again Samohi was bolstered by outstanding pitching. Paul Salazar worked the first four innings against Morningside and Tyler Skaggs overcame some early wildness to prevail in the rematch.
In the second game, Morningside scored first and Samohi needed a two-run rally in the fourth inning to win again.
“Two days after we had our best offensive output of the season we had to claw to defeat Morningside again,” said Duron.
Alex Kovac’s hot hitting has bolstered Samohi in recent games.