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Woodbridge Wolverines tangle with Manteca Animals in NCSSA tourney

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Woodbridge Wolverines tangle with  Manteca Animals in NCSSA tourney

Manteca Animals player Jim Laurenti, left, encourages fellow players from the dugout during Thursday’s NCSSA softball game against the Woodbridge Wolverines of Del Webb.

VINCE REMULAT/


POSTED August 16, 2013 12:51 a.m.



The Wolverines of Woodbridge had a strong showing at a recent Northern California Senior Softball Association tournament at Big League Dreams.

The result of that may have been a mixed blessing.

The age 60 and older men’s competitive team is made up of players exclusively from Del Webb of Manteca, an active adult community for age 55 and older. The Wolverines posted a 4-6 mark in the event held back in March.

During the NCSSA Hall of Fame tourney, they were seeded in a tough bracket at the current three-day event at BLD, going 0-3 on Thursday after losing to the Animals, 25-20.

Play goes through Sunday, with NCSSA event made up of 78 teams and over 1,200 players from throughout Northern California, Nevada and Oregon.

“The real good teams have players who can all run and hit throughout the lineup,” said Rudy Salvador, who is the manager and player of the Wolverines.

His team kept it close in the earlier losses to State Roofing (13-11) and Ain’t No Saint (19-16).

The Animals are also based in Manteca, with some of their players coming in from Tracy and Modesto.

According to NCSSA rules, teams in the tourney are limited from scoring more than 5 runs per inning unless that inning is deemed “open,” meaning teams could score beyond the 5-run limit.

The Wolverines trailed by five runs in their last at-bats, but were held scoreless in that “open” sixth inning.

Prior to that, they were awarded one extra run in the second, third, and fourth innings based on the Animals’ higher ranking.

Despite spotting those extra runs, the Animals still managed to score five runs in each frame against the Wolverines.

The Animals jumped out to a 5-0 run lead thanks to six hits and an error in the first.

The Wolverines came back with five runs of their own. Robert Ybarra’s single down the left field line tied the game at 5-5.

The Animals answered with a five-run second inning. Jerry Shuman, Steve Gibson, Bob Allendorf, Don Giovannetti were among those with key hits in the frame.

But Woodbridge staged a two-out rally.

Pat O’Rourke and Wayne Gordon opened with back-to-back singles and Bill Norcup drew a bases load walk. Nelson Conner’s two-run double coupled with hits by Sandy Conner and Bob Perrin kept the game close.

In the next inning, the Wolverines tied the game at 15-15. Ravazza blasted a double to right.

Don Angle had a lead-off double for the Animals, who, one-out later, then reeled off six consecutive hits to forge a 20-15 advantage.

Woodbridge tied the game at 20-20 in the fifth only to see the Animals respond with five more in the bottom half of the frame.

Salvador, meanwhile, indicated that his Wolverines are scheduled to play in two more tournaments this year. “We play four times while (the players) in our Del Webb league go twice a week,” he said.

Many of the good players from the league games are invited to play for one of the competitive teams, according to Salvador.

“They all must live in Woodbridge – that’s the rule,” he said of the competitive squads. “It’s written that way in our bylaws.”

To reach reporter Vince Rembulat, e-mail vrembulat@mantecabulletin.com.

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