TRACY — After starting the season with two close losses, East Union’s baseball team came out on the winning end of another thanks to a dominant pitching performance from senior Marco Gonzales on Tuesday.
The Lancers opened the Tracy Tournament with a 2-1 victory over West, needing just three this to do so thanks to the Menlo College-bound Gonzales. He struck out 14 batters, walked one and hit another in his two-hit gem. The fourth-inning run he allowed was unearned.
“Outstanding from the bump,” East Union coach Dan Triglia said. “He was dominating. His two-seam fastball was really working well for him today.”
Gonzales ended the game strong, striking out the side in order in the bottom of the seventh. He also struck out the side in the fourth and fanned three batters three times apiece.
He got all the run support he needed in the second when Scott Morenzone drove in Brayden Hardcastle with a hit and Adrian Affleje scored on a wild pitch. Gyse Huslebosch and Mason James accounted for East Union’s other two hits. East Union (1-2) mounted most of its threats with walks, finishing with eight.
“We need to get the bats working,” Triglia said. “We had opportunities, just couldn’t come up with the clutch hits to put up some crooked numbers. But we had a strong defensive performance and it helps when Marco is throwing the way he did today.”
East Union resumes tournament play today against host Tracy starting at 3:30 p.m. at Monte Vista Middle School fields.
Central Valley 3 (8)
LATHROP — Lathrop (2-0-1) rallied to plate all of its runs in the sixth and seventh innings, but the game was called to darkness after the score remained knotted by the end of the extra frame.
The Spartans trailed 2-0 in the bottom of the sixth when Brian Baltazar, Keenan Donatelli (4 for 4) and David Lopez reached with consecutive no-out singles. Albert Flores tied it with a two-run double, but Central Valley (0-2-2) was able to get the next three outs in order to limit the damage.
The visiting Hawks recaptured the lead in the seventh, and Lathrop’s Baltazar, who reached on an outfield error to start the bottom half of the inning, answered with the tying run.
East Union 4, Gregori 0
MODESTO — A leadoff single in the bottom of the sixth inning broke up Mikayla Bongi’s bid for a no-hitter, but she shined nonetheless in her 12-strikeout masterpiece.
Sam Owen gave East Union (3-0) the lead for good with a solo home run in the first inning. The Lancers tallied three insurance runs in the sixth. Michelle Castro, Danyelle Godoy and Deja Guzman each contributed two hits and a run.
Sierra 2, Gregori 0
MODESTO — The Timberwolves (5-0-2) held off Gregori after freshmen Yasmin Ballew and Jadyn Shinn each scored a goal. Fellow freshman Kayley Alvarado assisted both. Emma Broderick had five saves in the shutout.
“It was a good back-and-forth battle,” Sierra coach Manuel Pires said. “We had a few more chances to score but they had a few too that we were able to stop.”
Sierra next heads to Lincoln of Stockton before hosting its two-day Vern Gebhardt Cup starting Friday.
Hughson 239, Ripon 251
TURLOCK — Ripon (0-1, 1-1) started its Trans-Valley League schedule with what coach Chris Musseman hopes to be the team’s worst score of the season.
Hughson’s Ben Johannes led all players with a 5-over 41 at Turlock Country Club. Connor Larkin paced Ripon with a 44 and was followed by Luis Candido (47), Trent Hawes (47), Rhet Herrin (56) and Justin Brito (57).
“Real frustrating day,” Musseman said. “It was a culmination of us not playing well and me not preparing them well enough.”
Ripon will look to work the kinks out in a nonleague match today when it faces rival school Ripon Christian at Spring Creek Golf & Country Club.