TRACY — Carson Sanders got to have a say in the ending of the game after all.
Pitching the first five-plus innings for the Northgate Cubs on Friday, a pair of fielding miscues allowed the Manteca Giants to get two aboard in the bottom of the sixth with one out. Although he should have had the complete-game win at this point, Sanders was nearing his pitch-count limit and exited the game with Ivan Vieira taking to the mound.
Giants leadoff batter Eli Terpsma smashed a line drive that appeared to be heading to center field and scoring at least one run when Sanders plucked it out of the air and doubled up the runner on second to end the game.
This gave the Cubs a 6-3 consolation final win and a berth in today’s championship game of the District 67 Majors Tournament of Champions against the Spreckels Park Giants at Legacy Fields.
Sanders allowed four hits and one earned run on an RBI double by Jojo Brizuela (3 for 3, RBI, two doubles) in the third inning that scored Landon Chamberlain to draw Manteca within 4-1.
Sanders let his defense work, striking out three and walking two. His defense came up big time when with Brizuela on second and one out Anthony Garcia chased down a deep fly ball off the bat of Bryan Lopez and made a leaping catch, keeping Brizuela at second.
Vieira had a standout game at the plate, going 3 for 3 with a three-run home run as the big hit in the first inning for Northgate. Vieira led off the third with a single and was knocked in by Nick Ridgewell (2 for 3, RBI, run) for a 4-0 lead.
In the fifth inning Ridgewell singled and came in on an error off the bat of Sanders (double, run). Sanders scored on Kila Day’s single to make the score 6-3. Ridgewell plated Vieira on an RBI single in the third.
Manteca got two runs behind a pair of Northgate errors in the fourth. Michael George walked to start the inning, got to third on an error off the bat of Reece George and scored on another error off the bat of Nick Matess. Reece George scored when Eli Terpsma grounded into a double play to make the score 4-2.
The Cubs face Spreckles Park this morning at 10 and must win to force a winner-take-all game.
Weston Ranch 12,
Manteca Marlins 11
The Marlins ran out of time Thursday – or more specifically, daylight.
After taking the lead in the top of the sixth, Manteca made three intentional outs by having the batters step on the plate and swinging in an attempt to beat the setting sun. Unfortunately, that effort was in vain as darkness descended before the end of the sixth, reverting the final score back to the end of the previous inning when Weston Ranch led, ending the season for Manteca with the consolation loss at Brock Elliott School.
A potent offense helped the Marlins jump out to a 10-1 lead after four innings. Isaac Acuna (4 for 4, three RBI, double) and Anthony Jimenez (4 for 4, two RBI) paced the Manteca offense while Cole Martin, Isaiah Alcoser and Danny Alvarez all went 2 for 3. Elisio Cervantes was 1 for 4 with three RBI and Jesse Bella was hit by a pitch three times.
Acuna had a stellar day at the mound, throwing eight strike outs in three innings while allowing only one run.