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Harris, Ripon douse Wildfires
Sophomore pitches no-hitter in rare start
Alyssa Harris of Ripon High blows a pitch past Foresthills Zoe Moss. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO

RIPON — Sophomore Alyssa Harris shined in her longest outing in the pitcher’s circle for Ripon High Monday, twirling a five-inning no-hitter in an 11-0 victory over nonleague visitor Foresthill of Placer County.

Harris, who had previously logged just 3 2/3 innings through 11 games, struck out the first five batters she faced and ended up with 10 punchouts.

Foresthill’s Zoe Moss reached on a dropped third strike to start the fourth inning and break up Harris’ bid for a perfect game, and Hailey James later walked to put two on with one out. Harris escaped the jam by forcing two straight grounders.

“I have three kids who can throw, and she definitely deserves to get some innings in,” Ripon coach Robert Vernon said of Harris. “This week is a good chance for her to get some full games in.”

After a brutal seven-day stretch in which Ripon went 1-3 against four powerhouse programs (Sierra, Hughson, East Union, Escalon), things should go a little more smoothly this week with a game at Modesto Christian (0-2 TVL, 3-6 overall) today and Riverbank (2-1, 6-8-1) visiting Thursday for Trans-Valley League contests. 

Ripon (9-3) helped its pitcher gain confidence quickly after a torrid seven-run first inning rally. The Indians’ No. 3-6 hitters were replaced by the bottom of the third inning, but the game was well in hand by that point. Leadoff batter Darian Vandermaaten reached four times and went 2 for 2 with two runs, a double and an RBI. Melanie Wilkerson was 3 for 4 with two runs.