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Unbeaten Cougars capitalize on miscues
BB--Escalon-Ripon pic 1 WEB
Tanner McCrary beats on Ripon first baseman Vincent Olmo to the plate for an Escalon run during a Trans-Valley League contest Wednesday. - photo by GARY JENSEN/

RIPON — You cannot give a good team extra outs and expect to win. 

Ripon did just that on Wednesday and the outcome was predictable, with the visiting Escalon winning the Trans-Valley League baseball contest 8-4.

“We took advantage of the walks and a couple of misplayed balls,” Escalon coach Greg Largent said. “Along with some of the mistakes they gave us.

“But other than that, it was a pretty tight game.”

The Indians (1-1 TVL, 10-3 overall) issued 10 walks through five innings and 11 overall, committing two errors in both the sixth and seventh innings. 

“We gave them a lot of walks,” Ripon coach Jacob Rodriguez said. “They scored eight runs on five hits. They had all singles — I don’t think they had a double. You just can’t give them too many passes.

“Today was a little off for us. We came out flat. We will go back to the drawing board Thursday and we have them again Friday, so that’s a good thing.”

The Indians got two runs in the fourth inning when Eric Jaquez led off the frame with a double and Jacob Gahm was hit by a pitch. Donald Cooksey knocked in Jaquez with a double off the left-field fence and Brandon Rainer plated Gahm on a groundout to draw Ripon within 4-2. 

With the exception of the Indians fourth, Ripon could not manage a runner past second base until the seventh when Rainer and Vincent Olmo both singled and each one gained 90 feet on a wild pitch. Both came in on a two-out single by Gerald Nix. 

Parker Cosby went the distance on the mound for Escalon (3-0, 15-0), striking out seven and allowing five hits. Cosby set the Indians down in order in the first, third, fifth and sixth innings.

“He’s not really our pitcher,” Largent said of Cosby. “He’s our No. 1 catcher. We lost our No. 1 and No. 2 pitchers, so we are throwing athletes out there and he has a good baseball IQ so we throw him out there and he keeps them off balance and we play good defense.

“We trust him out there. He has done a really good job so far.” 

Zach Abraham was 2 for 4 with two RBI and a run for the Cougars and teammate Max Nicholas doubled and scored a run.