MODESTO — A five-run burst in the fifth inning was more than enough for Andrew Morones and the East Union baseball team, which completed a two-game sweep of Central Catholic with a 5-0 win Thursday.
The Lancers (7-3, 13-6 overall) are now alone in second place in the Valley Oak League but trail Oakdale by three games with four remaining.
East Union managed to get a combined shutout despite Morones issuing six walks. He struck out six and allowed three hits, two of them doubles. Tyler Slaughter pitched a perfect seventh inning and struck out the final two batters.
“We were very solid defensively and had no errors,” East Union coach Dan Triglia said. “Andrew Morones was around the plate. He had a few more walks than we wanted to see but he kept on battling and had some overpowering stuff at times.”
Danny Marquez ignited the Lancers’ fifth-inning eruption with a one-out double. He later scored on an error. Morones doubled the lead with an RBI single, and Mason James (2 for 4) knocked in two more with a single to right. Jake Harries capped it with a bases-loaded walk.
Weston Ranch 7, Kimball 3
TRACY — Weston Ranch (4-5, 13-8) kept itself in the hunt for one of the two remaining Sac-Joaquin playoff spots in the VOL.
Austin Cappas (double, triple), Carlos Drain (home run) and Larry Martinez roped two hits apiece for the Cougars, who raced away with a three-run sixth inning. Manuel Rubio contributed a double.
Winning pitcher Rylan Tinlsey logged six innings of work and struck out five.
Oakdale 15, Sierra 3 (5)
OAKDALE — The VOL-leading Mustangs (10-0, 18-4) scored six runs in the bottom of the first and the rout was on.
Sierra (5-5, 10-9) did not answer until the fifth when it scored all of its runs. Oakdale totaled 16 hits and were highlighted by home runs hit by Bryce Kirk and Cullen Bearden. The Timberwolves were limited to three hits, which came from Chase Sperbeck, Jesse Babauta and Miguel Cervantes.
Ripon Christian 10,
Delhi 0 (6)
DELHI — Madison DeGraaf fired 11 strikeouts in her one-hit masterpiece as the Knights improved to 7-3 in the Southern League and 14-7 overall.
Katie O’Leary (two doubles, two RBIs, two runs) and Liz Thomas (double, two runs, RBI) both went 3 for 4. Sarah Brown chipped in two hits, and Emily Van Vliet drove in a pair of runs.
Ripon 232, Hughson 266
RIPON — The Indians (11-0) can secure an outright championship by winning the Trans-Valley League Tournament at Micke Grove Golf Links next Monday.
They’re undefeated going into the league finale after dispatching third-place Hughson (8-4) and Spring Creek Golf & Country Club, where Luis Candido tallied a 38. Nico Ilardi added a 47, while Garrett Avila, Rhet Herrin and Cole Stevens each turned in a 49.
Ripon coach Chris Musseman is pleased with the position his team is in after losing its top player Connor Larkin, who moved to Texas at the start of the season.
“People thought we were dead in the water without him and the guys believed they are more than just Connor and proved it all year,” Musseman said. “You can’t argue with what they’ve done so far. Every match a different kid stepped up for us.”