STOCKTON – It did not take long for a pair of Sierra High graduates to make an impact on the All-Star Baseball Classic at the University of the Pacific Friday, when Dylan DeBrouwer and Nathan O’Leary helped ignite the South’s 5-0 victory over the North.
DeBrouwer recorded the game’s first hit and advanced to third on a North error a batter later. After a walk, O’Leary came to the plate and put the South on top for good, driving in DeBrouwer and another teammate with a two-out double for a quick 2-0 lead. They would add two more in the fourth and another in the sixth.
“I was just trying to see the ball and hit the ball,” O’Leary said. “There really wasn’t anything else going through my mind. There were a couple runners out there and I wanted to take advantage and drive them in.”
The South would not look back, using the assistance of a dominant pitching staff that held the North all-stars to just five hits in the contest. Ripon High graduate Hayden Koch collected one of the North’s hit with a single in the bottom of the eighth.
DeBrouwer just missed out on a perfect 3-for-3 evening at the plate, getting robbed in his final at-bat by a diving right fielder. All of the players swung wood bats and a quality 2-for-3 performance at the dish displayed DeBrouwer’s comfort in swinging the wood.
“The last time I played was on the last game of the season,” DeBrouwer said. “So I have been working out really hard for this game. I played hard and I’m glad that I was able to play pretty good.
“It would have been nice to get that third hit, but I feel I played well.”
East Union graduate Ronnie Limas handled the bulk of the catching duties for a talented South pitching rotation and helped the cause by throwing out a pair of base runners. Limas also got on base twice with a hit and a beanball. Limas’ base hit was a laser back up the box, plating the South’s final run of the game.
“It was an all-star game, so I was just coming out and trying to give everything that I’ve got,” Limas said. “It was a really decent group of pitchers. It was a lot of quality pitching from all of the different leagues.
“It was good for me to be able to work with so many pitchers and learn some different things.”
The North did get a solid inning of work out of Trans Valley League Pitcher of the Year Justin Scott from Ripon High. Scott struck out two in his first inning of work, but was plagued my defensive miscues in his second inning, leading to five consecutive runners reaching base and two runs coming around to score.