Ripon made program history with its 3-1 win at Escalon on Monday.
The Indians (6-0-1, 13-5-1 overall) are unbeaten on the road at 5-0-1 in the Trans-Valley League for the first time. Their remaining five matches will take place at Stouffer Field.
“That will be nice. No more bus rides for league (contests),” said Ripon coach Jamie DeBruyn. “When you go to these old TVL stomping grounds — like Escalon, Riverbank, Hilmar and Hughson — it’s hard to get a win there. Those teams always play well on their field.”
Playing well on its own field is another issue for Ripon. More on that later.
Matt Uecker got Ripon rolling in the 23rd minute when he deflected in a cross from Mauricio Aguirre. Freshman Thomas Sidtikun increased the lead in the 37th and 54th minutes with assists coming from Alex Aguilar and Roberto Alvarez. Escalon (2-5-1, 4-8-2) didn’t answer until the 83rd minute. Ripon goalie Jonathan Soto finished with four saves.
The Indians next host Hughson (2-4-1, 5-10-2) Wednesday and winless Modesto Christian on Oct. 21 before battling TVL co-leader Riverbank.
“It’s getting to the point in league where we have to up our game a little more,” DeBruyn said. “Each game becomes more important.
“It’s a good thing we get a couple games in before we see Riverbank at our place because we don’t practice on that field. We haven’t played there since our last game with Escalon (Sept. 18), so we get a chance to get used to the rolls and bounces.”
Ripon Christian 4, Denair 1
The Knights (5-3 SL, 10-6-2 overall) won their third straight behind Danny Vander Molen’s two goals and one assist.
Andrew Manes also scored twice, opening scoring in the seventh minute off a Kyle Van Vuren dish and striking again in the 27th from a Vander Molen pass. Travis Vander Molen assisted both of his cousin’s goals.