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Sierra rally stuns Manteca

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Sierra rally stuns Manteca

Manteca's Daniel Cervantes makes the tag on Sierra base runner Kenny Leasure during a pickle in Sierra's 5-4 come-from-behind win over the Buffaloes.


POSTED April 9, 2010 2:00 a.m.
The three-run lead that Manteca High held over the visiting Sierra Timberwolves appeared to be plenty secure.

Looking to rebound from a one-run loss to Sierra on Tuesday, the Buffaloes were patient in their approach before unleashing an offensive attack that would not only tie the game, but give them a lead in the bottom of the fifth inning that they were hoping would show that they were serious about avenging their only league loss this year.

But Sierra – who spent its Spring Break participating in the Fresno Easter Classic – had other ideas on how the game was going to turn out.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Timberwolves (4-0 VOL, 9-4) led off with a pair of doubles and had their next batter reach on an error. A series of past balls allowed the Sierra runners to advance into scoring position, another pair of singles – from Jonathan Davis and Brian McAllaster – drove in the final runs that gave the Timberwolves the 5-4 lead that they’d hold on to for a victory.

“I think that when we go down to Fresno and we have to play some very good baseball teams, that helps us out when we find ourselves in situations like this,” Sierra head coach Jack Thomsen said. “It would have been very easy for us to fall behind and put our tail between our legs, but we just kept battling – we did a much better job at the plate. This is a good win for our kids.”

While McAllaster scored the first run for Sierra – aided by a pair of errors by Manteca’s shortstop – Sierra remained relatively quiet and struggled against Manteca starter Matt Barber.

Sierra’s Bryce Willis pitched four and two-thirds innings and gave up only two runs before Kenny Leasure came in to relieve him. Despite letting Daniel Miramontes and Matt Burrows score right off the bat – aided partially by a balk that brought a run home – Leasure collected himself and allowed one hit for the remainder of the game.

Manteca (4-2, 9-6-1) battled back in the seventh, but was unable to make-up the tying run.

“I think that Bryce did a great job for us today, and that Kenny did when he replaced him – he has five official saves so far this year and this is his second relief victory,” Thomsen said. “Kenny has been pitching like that all year, and the guys really got behind him today. They had some close plays there at the end of the game – one where I thought that (Matt) Barber might have legged out a single but we were able to shore up our defense.

“You don’t win games with good coaching – you win games with kids making plays.”

Manteca head coach Gene Ballardo declined comment.

East Union 18, Weston Ranch 3
STOCKTON – Things didn’t go very well for East Union the last time they took the field to face the Weston Ranch Cougars.

Even with the home diamond on their side, East Union simply couldn’t stop the Cougars from pounding away at their pitching and 10-running the squad

But the Lancers got their revenge on Thursday.

Thanks to a total team offensive effort to back pitcher Bret Riley, East Union jumped out to an early lead and continued to mount runs until they found themselves staring an 18-3 score in the sixth inning – neutralizing Weston Ranch’s 10-run rout earlier this week and showing the Lancers that they have everything working once again.

“Today was just a combination of pitching, defense, hitting – we put it all together and got our chance to avenge that ugly loss that suffered at their hands the last time we faced,” East Union head coach Dan Triglia said. “Overall we just had a really good day.”

According to Triglia, Riley had no problem changing speed from the mound and keeping the Cougar batters on their toes – giving up only three runs, two of which were earned. He scattered five hits over six innings and recorded five strikeouts.

Steven Gigli made the most out of his plate appearances, reaching base safely four of the five times he stepped into the batter’s box. Gigli hammered a pair of doubles and added a triple in addition to an RBI. Ronnie Limas finished 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a scored three runs, while Riley helped his cause by driving in three runs with his only hit of the game.
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