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Riponites rewarded

Matt Unruh named TVL’s Defensive Player of the Year

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Riponites rewarded

Ripon High infielder Francisco Gustin, left, was named to the all-Trans Valley League first team, while Ripon Christian's Aaron Fay earned honorable mention.

Bulletin file photo/


POSTED May 23, 2009 2:32 a.m.
Fresno Pacific-bound Ripon Christian senior Matt Unruh leads nine area standouts named to the all-Trans Valley League team, as he was voted one the conference’s Defensive Players of the Year.

League champion Escalon racked up the most honors, with Greg Largent earning Coach of the Year. Cougar slugger Leighton Pangilinan shares co-MVP recognition with Hughson’s Jake Etcheverry, and shortstop Spencer Fransceschetti is the other Defensive Player of the Year.

Southpaw hurler John Lopez was named the TVL’s Most Outstanding Pitcher.

Unruh, a well-rounded student-athlete who was one of 50 A. Dale Lacky Scholarship winners in the Sac-Joaquin Section, will be used as a utility player at Fresno Pacific. He had just four errors this past season and boasted a .931 fielding percentage.

As reliable as he was at second base, Unruh also anchored the offense with one of the area’s most powerful bats. He led the area with six home runs with a .339 batting average.

Ripon Christian junior pitcher/outfielder Steve Vander Molen was named to the all-league first team, posting a 3.36 ERA from the mound and a .348 average at the plate.

Past and future stars at crosstown rival Ripon were honored with first-team nods. Senior center fielder Kyle Wagner rounded out a stellar career by leading the Indians with five homers, 24 runs and 24 batted in. He also hit for a .397 average.

Infielder Francisco Gustin hit from the second-place of the order in front of Wagner, batting .438. Sophomore catcher Zach Evans proved he was ready for varsity and was one of the Indians’ best clutch hitters. He hit .302 and drove in 17 runs.

Earning honorable mention were Ripon’s Colby Gomes, Camden Dowhower and Michael Conway; and Ripon Christian’s Aaron Fay.

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