When Sacramento (Calif.) Pioneer High pitchers Robert Daugherty and Thomas Galart walked off the turf at Raley Field, home of the AAA Sacramento River Cats, they should have been celebrating a masterful achievement; the two had just combined for a no-hitter against Roseville (Calif.) High. Yet Daugherty and Galart found themselves looking up at Roseville, which emerged from the game with a 2-0 win and an equally impressive pitching performance, with Roseville ace Mark Reece tossing a no-hitter of his own in the game.
That's right: A rare double no-hitter, all in one of the most picturesque parks in California. Incredibly, the contest ended in the regulation seven innings. How did that happen?
According to the Sacramento Bee and Roseville Press Tribune, the answer has everything to do with errors and passed balls, as it turns out. Roseville scored its first run on an error by the Pioneer second baseman in the first inning, then added a second in the fourth inning on a passed ball. That second runner to score also reached base on a passed ball, stole second and third base, and then scored on another passed ball.
Talk about creating offense out of limited opportunities.
"Not only are [Reece, Daughterty and Galart] great baseball players, I could not have selected a better group from both sides to represent the game of baseball in such a beautiful venue," Pioneer coach Craig Marquez told the Bee.
How rare is a double no-hitter? While the feat has surely been accomplished more recently in other parts of the country, the Bee reported that it's believed to have occurred just once in the Sacramento region: In 1947, when Sacramento (Calif.) Lincoln High edged Elk Grove (Calif.) High 1-0 on a no-hitter by Fred Besana. Ritchie Myers threw a no-hitter for Elk Grove in the loss, and both pitchers eventually went on to compete in the major leagues some nine years later.
As for Reece, the victorious senior had special motivation for his statistical feat: He was pitching on his mother's birthday and promised that he'd deliver a no-no. He fulfilled that pledge, even if it was tougher to get the win during a no-hitter than he could ever have imagined.
"It's funny. When you have special days like this, you always have under-stories and stuff like that. It's absolutely amazing," Roseville coach Hank DeMello told the Press Tribune.