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East Union edges Ceres with pinch-hit, bases-loaded walk
Ceres-East Union baseball
With Victor Naranjo (4) backing up the play, East Union’s Peyton Heath (19) forces Ceres’ Carson Ulrich to start a game-ending double play. - photo by SEAN KAHLER

In a game that saw a pair of ties and a lead change Monday afternoon, a three-inning fifth inning helped give East Union a 7-5 non-league baseball win over visiting Ceres at Agostini Field.

“It was a roller coaster,” Lancers coach Dan Bauer said. “We learned how to win ugly today. There are a lot of things to clean up and we are young, so we learn something every close game. We have quite a few games coming up, and our schedule is pretty full. We have Tokay on Wednesday — that will be a good challenge, that will be fun.

“Ryan Guibor didn’t do bad on the mound starting out. He was a little nervous, a lot of kids are nervous. We are still getting over the jitters. Some of these guys have not played varsity ball before. We will do all right, though. We are grinders”

With the bases loaded and the score tied 4-4 in the bottom of fifth inning and one out, Caanen Showers came in to pinch hit for East Union (2-0-1) and drew a walk to plate Brayden Camara and put the Lancers ahead for good at 5-4.

“That was the first high-school at-bat for Showers in two years,” Bauer said. “He has been swinging well in practice.

“We always tell everyone on the bench to always be ready, because you never know when their number is going to be called.

“I was proud of him. I tried to calm him down, but you could see his heart was beating hard. That was a good thing.”

Jackson Fay (two RBI, triple, run) followed Showers and blasted a towering fly ball to the right-field corner for a two-run sacrifice fly, scoring Peyton Heath (two runs) from third and J.P. Abrew from second.

“I was just thinking about putting the ball in play,” Fay said. “We needed to get some runs in and it just happened how it happened.

“My teammates did a great job reading the ball and got some good jumps. Couldn’t do anything without them.”

Lancers catcher Carson Sanders reached base four times, going 3 for 3 with an RBI, two runs and a walk. Sanders also made a diving put-out at home to end the second inning for the Bulldogs (0-1).

“I’m just trying to get better every day,” Sanders said. “Taking extra reps at practice. Looking for base hits, not trying to do too much with it.”

Heath gave East Union a 1-0 lead when he scored from third on a delayed steal in the second inning. Fay tripled to lead off the third and scored on a single by Sanders who worked his way around and scored on a passed ball for a 3-1 Lancers lead.

Sanders drew a two-out walk in the fourth and scored when Blake Mount doubled to tie the score at 4-4. Mount came in to pitch the seventh inning and close out the game.

Ceres put up a three-run fourth inning behind a pair of RBI singles by Aiden Maines and Vincent Castrejon (2 for 4, RBI, double) and an error off the bat of Diego Mariscal.  

East Union hosts Tokay on Wednesday afternoon at 3:30.