STOCKTON — Weston Ranch capped its winningest season in program history with a 4-0 shutout of defending Valley Oak League champion Sierra on Wednesday.
With only three seniors leaving — center fielder Josh Dilg, infielder/pitcher Jordan Severin and outfielder Imran Khan — Cougars coach David Hager believes that the win is a sign of things to come.
“Today was a day that showed people that Weston Ranch can play baseball,” he said. “We have a good nucleus coming back, and we firmly believe that if we play every day to the best of our ability that we’re good as any team that we play.”
Among those returning next year is junior pitcher Manuel Rubio. The lefty scattered five hits, walked two and struck out six in his gutty complete-game effort.
“Manuel Rubio threw his guts out and left everything on the table today,” Hager said. “You can’t ask for anything more from Manuel. He had good command today, got out of a couple of jams in the middle innings and continually found a way.”
Weston Ranch (5-9, 16-10) had just two hits but took advantage of four walks and three errors. Khan capped the final score in the fourth with a single to right-center field that plated freshman Amier Bowen (walked). Severin accounted for the other hit and also scored a run.
Sierra’s Anthony Arredondo (four innings) and Jessie Babauta combined for the two-hitter. The Timberwolves (7-7, 13-10) failed to qualify for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs after reaching the semifinals last year.
Central Catholic 8,
MODESTO — The playoff-bound Raiders (10-4, 16-10) rallied for six runs in the final two innings to come away victorious.
Albert Flores drove in Brian Baltazar with a double in the top of the fifth inning to give upset-minded Lathrop (1-13, 4-16) a 4-2 lead.
Ripon Christian 24,
Le Grand 1
LE GRAND — The Knights (13-1, 20-5) roll into the SJS Division VI playoffs riding an 11-game win streak following Wednesday’s shelling of the Bulldogs (6-8, 9-17)
Ripon Christian piled up 12 runs in the opening inning and totaled 21 hits. Le Grand managed to scratch across a run in the second despite a combined no-hitter from Jadon Vander Molen, Travis Vander Molen and winning pitcher Michael Cummins (three innings).
Willem Hoekstra spearheaded the barrage, going 3 for 3 with four runs, five RBIs and two doubles. Westmont-bound Travis Vander Molen was 3 for 4 with a triple, four runs and two RBIs. Jadon Vander Molen (3 for 3) and Cummins (1 for 1) each drove in three runs.