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Buffaloes battle, fall to Grace Davis
Manteca’s Matt Burrows kept his Buffaloes in the game with an outstanding performance in Manteca’s 6-2 loss to Grace Davis Wednesday.
The eyes of Major League Baseball were watching and Manteca High junior Matt Burrows was poised to take the spotlight. Burrows came close, but he was unable to match the performance of Grace Davis standout pitcher Jake Sisco during the Buffaloes 6-2 loss to Davis Wednesday at Manteca High.

Professional baseball scouts lined the right field line and the top tier of bleachers behind home plate, looking for a bird’s eye view of the Spartans’ fire-baller. Even though Manteca struck first with a 1-0 first inning lead, Sisco did not disappoint, going the distance and striking out 10 for his third win in as many starts.

Burrows did all he could do to match his counterpart, going 6.1 innings and holding Davis to just five hits and striking out five. Burrows got touched in the fourth inning when Davis opened the frame with an infield single, followed by another single and then a disastrous 2-run error on an infield ground ball.

“Since I had him last year, that’s just the way he is,” Manteca head coach Gene Ballardo said of his starter. “If you tell him that some guy on the other team is great, then he always rises and wants to be greater. That’s how he is in practice, that’s how he is on the field and that’s how he is in the classroom.

“I have nothing but praises for Matt.”

The Spartans (3-0-1) trailed Manteca 1-0 until the tide-changing fourth inning. They would add runs in the fifth and sixth innings, and two more in the seventh. Manteca’s Daniel Miramontes battled through a leg injury, singling in the third and doubling in the sixth. He finished 2 for 3 with a RBI, but was the only Buffaloe to manage multiple hits.

“I was real happy with what we were able to do in the beginning,” Ballardo said. “We manufactured the one run early and we weren’t going to back down. Obviously, we lost today, but there is a much bigger picture than that.

“Our guys fought hard today, and there were a lot of positives coming out of this game.”

Manteca (1-4-1) cannot be overwhelmed by its overall record, dropping three contests that they battled in to well-respected Division I programs. The team is building towards a Valley Oak League opener that is less than a week away.

“I think it’s very important for us to see the caliber of teams we’re seeing,” Ballardo said of their scheduling. “That was my goal this year, because I know we have a young team I wanted to schedule the toughest opponents possible. That’s what non-league is all about.

“You want to get ready and see what you have, and I like what I see.”

Gabe Rellamas scored once and added a double, while Burrows helped his cause 1 for 3 with an RBI and the first Manteca hit off Sisco.

Manteca will try to close out the non-league schedule on a high note when they make the trip to Stockton to take on the Cesar Chavez Titans at 4 p.m.