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Myles Hager from the Montclair Prep High School boys Varsity Baseball team tags Michael Rosen at third base before Rosen is able to touch the base at Cloverpark the homefield for Crossroads on Thursday April 21st 2010 as Crossroads hosted Montclair in a Southern Section baseball game and lost 9-1. Despite being taged before the base Rosen was ruled safe by the umpire (photo by Morgan Genser)

CLOVER PARK — Flights may have been grounded at nearby Santa Monica Airport for President Obama’s visit to the Westside on Thursday, but the same can’t be said for baseballs.

Montclair Prep hit three home runs off Crossroads starter Holden Miller to keep the Roadrunners winless in league during a 9-1 romp at Clover Park. Crossroads fell to 4-9 overall and 0-7 in the Alpha League in defeat.

Making things even more daunting for Crossroads was the presence of Montclair starting pitcher Max Fried, considered a top prospect who has already committed to play for UCLA. The tall junior lefty pitched six innings, surrendering just one run in the process. He also recorded nine strikeouts.

“That’s why he’s one of the best pitchers in Southern California,” Crossroads head coach Spencer Kirksey said of Fried. “He’s a great pitcher.”

Fried was successful in shutting down a Crossroads offense that has struggled during the Roadrunners’ current eight-game losing streak. For Kirksey, who is in his first year as coach, he thinks that something has to give as the Roadrunners make their way down the final stretch of what has been a trying season.

“We just have to keep going after it,” he said. “But, our bats have been quiet lately.”

The lone Crossroads run came in the third inning. Sophomore Michael Rosen led off the inning with a single to left field. He would eventually score on a Andres Leyva sacrifice fly to right field, but that was all the offense the Roadrunners could muster against a dominant Fried.

“Max really kept his composure,” Montclair head coach Rick Weber said. “He was on his game today.”

The loss was the second in two days to Montclair for Crossroads. Wednesday’s loss was also 9-1. Despite the lopsided final scores, Montclair’s Weber is impressed by Crossroads, particularly shortstop Leyva.

“They battle hard,” Weber said. “As a first-year coach, [Kirksey] is doing a good job.”

Next for Crossroads is an Alpha League matchup with Campbell Hall next Tuesday at home.

daniela@smdp.com

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