TRACY — It is tough to win when you do not score, and it is tough to score when you do not get on base.
Manteca pitcher Louis Rivera was on fire Monday, striking out 10 and limiting Northgate to just four base runners on the way to an 11-1 five-inning win for the District 67 9-10 All-Star championship at Legacy Fields.
“Louis (Rivera) was just lights out,” Manteca manager Bubba Carabello said. “He is a dominant pitcher. I know any time he takes the mound we have a good chance of winning.
“We have 14 kids and they all contributed during this tournament. Whether it was pinch running, pinch hitting or playing defensive specialist, every one of these kids made this team what it is.”
Manteca’s big inning was the fourth with five runs. Although Manteca got just one hit in the frame, they put the bat on the ball hard and forced four errors. Brody Carabello, Madden Melendez and Louis Rivera on scored on an error off the bat of Fabian Nuno.
“The motto of our team is to hit the ball hard and to make them make plays,” Coach Carabello said. “We have done it all tournament long.”
With a 10-1 lead going into the fifth inning, Brody Carabello was on second when Rivera singled him to third. The relay to the infield got loose and Brody Carabello alertly came home, ending the game via the mercy rule.
Manteca tool a 4-0 lead in the first inning. Brody Carabello (two runs) and Melendez walked to start the inning and came home in a single by Nuno. Rivera (2 for 2, two runs) and Brixton Ortiz both scored on a double by Mateo Ceja and Manteca never looked back.
Melendez had the big hit of the night in the second inning with an inside-the-park home run.
Isaiah Ahio led off the Northgate second with a walk, took second on a Ryan Allen groundout and third on Daryl Carpenter’s beautiful sacrifice bunt. Ahio scooted home on a wild pitch to draw Northgate within 4-1.
“I am proud of our boys,” Northgate manager Erik Alves said. “This is our eighth game in 11 days. We won six straight to get here, but hats off to Manteca. They are the deserving champion.
“(Louis) Rivera was just too tough today and they hit the ball hard. They are a good team.”
Manteca will participate in the Section 6 All-Star tournament Saturday at Christa McCauliffe Middle School in Stockton at 1 p.m.