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Lancers smack 2 homers, one-hit Manteca
EUMHS SBALL5 3-22-14
East Unions Michelle Castro rounds third base and heads home during Fridays varsity game as Manteca hosted crosstown rival East Union High. - photo by HIME ROMERO/The Bulletin

East Union’s Cherish Burks hit the fifth pitch of the game over Manteca’s left-field fence for a leadoff home run, setting the tone for a 12-1 Valley Oak League victory on Friday.

“The past couple of games I have been struggling a bit,” Burks said. “I was just trying to get back into my groove and have been practicing a lot. It felt great to come out and see how the hard work at practice has paid off.”

Burks’ 2-for-2 outing with three runs was an impressive performance, but not the most impressive for East Union (3-0 VOL, 9-0 overall). Samantha Owen went 3 for 3 for the Lancers with a two-run home run, double and four RBI. She should have had five RBI, but one was taken away due to a base-running gaffe on her home run by a teammate that turned a run into an out. 

“I really wanted to beat our rival,” Owen said. “And I have been struggling at the plate lately so it was good I was able to come through for our team.”

East Union racked up 13 hits through the first four innings and Lancers freshman pitcher Alexis Erich gave up just one hit in that span.

“I didn’t sleep well at all last night,” Erich said. “I was playing the whole game in my head and I was worried about what was going to happen. I felt like my head was about to explode.”

East Union coach Brian Goulart is pleased with the dynamic Erich brings to the team.

“The difference in our team this year is this year is that we have someone who can get in the circle and shut teams down,” Goulart said. “Manteca can hit the tar out of the ball and has been putting up massive numbers but Alexis (Erich) pitched a great game.

“It is a nice change to have her in the circle – very exciting.”

Manteca (1-2, 4-4) finally found a way to chink Erich’s armor in the fifth inning, getting two hits and scoring its lone run when Peyton Rose singled in Melanie Ramos. The game was called in the bottom of the fifth inning due to the 10-run mercy rule.

“It was too little too late,” Buffaloes coach Corey Navarro said. “Cherish came out and got that home run and then they got two more runs.

“We made a few mistakes and they are a competitive team, and you can’t make mistakes like that against a competitive team. East Union is a good team and I tip my hat to them, but there is a lot of season left and we have to bounce back.”

Jordan Vinson (3 RBI, double), Michelle Castro (RBI) and Alejandra Rascon (triple) all went 2 for 3 for the Lancers and Erich walked twice and had a double. Until the fifth inning, Erich allowed just one base runner as far as second base.

Sierra 16, Lathrop 3

Gianna Lenoci went 4 for 5, drove in four runs and plated four runs in the five-inning rout at Lathrop. Sierra (2-1, 6-2) totaled 18 hits in its bounce-back effort from Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to Oakdale.

Julie Deanda was 3 for 3 with two RBIs, and Kikuno Tshahaka added two hits, two RBIs and two runs to the barrage.

Starting pitcher Allie Walljasper struck out five in two no-hit innings. Taylor Moss finished it out, fanning four while yielding four hits, a walk and three unearned runs.

Oakdale 9, Weston Ranch 4

The visiting Cougars (1-2, 6-4) jumped out to a 2-0 in the top of the first inning but couldn’t muster enough offense after that. They were held to just two hits overall.

Elysia Hernandez and Naomi Thurman scored twice apiece, and Christina Washington belted a double. Pitcher Aryanna Hernandez scattered 12 hits and struck out four.


East Union 16, Manteca 1

Kristina Mojica and Delaney Pamplin both drove in three runs and went 3 for 4, while Madusyn Anchundo racked up four RBIs in her 2-for-4 effort. Melissa Hansen was 2 for 3.

Winning pitcher Mikayla Bongi struck out two and walked none in the five-inning four-hitter. East Union improved to 3-0 in the VOL, 8-0 overall.

Lathrop 15, Sierra 11

The Spartans were anchored by twin sisters Alyssa and Gabby Garcia in the win. Alyssa gutted out the win from the pitcher’s circle, while Gabby turned in a fine defensive performance at third base.