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Friday Doubleheader Means Twin Wins For Varsity Baseball
With yet another rainout of a Trans-Valley League game on Wednesday, April 21, Escalon hosted a doubleheader, facing off twice with Hughson on Friday, April 23.

The game on Wednesday was supposed to be at Hughson but the bad weather forced the postponement.

"Luckily, we were able to get them to come here for two," coach Greg Largent said of the Huskies.

In the first game on Friday, the Cougars were considered the visitors, since that was the make up of the washed out Wednesday game.

Escalon walked off with a 13-0 thrashing of the Huskies, with two runs in the first, two more in the second, three in the third and six in the sixth to put the game away.

In the first inning, Josh Miguel started the game off by rapping out a triple and he quickly scored on Spencer Franceschetti's double. After an out, Nick Largent knocked Franceschetti in with a double.

Second inning scoring saw Matt Valencia reach on an error and move up on a Travis Cardoza sacrifice bunt. Miguel then walked and Franceschetti doubled to drive in two.

In the third inning, Derrick DeFreitas reached on an error, followed by a Trey Balber single, a sacrifice bunt by Valencia and a run-scoring single by Cardoza. Miguel then came up with a two-run double to make it 7-0.

"We added six in the sixth, started off by Aaron Pangilinan's home run over the top of the scoreboard, it probably went 430 to 450 feet," Largent said of the towering smash.

Walks and a fielder's choice loaded the bases later in the inning and Miguel crushed a home run for the grand slam, making it a 13-0 lead. Miguel had six runs batted in for the game.

"That was Josh's first homer of the year," said Largent.

Brandon Shaw got the start on the mound and pitched a complete game, scattering three hits. He struck out four and walked three.

Escalon rapped out 10 hits in the opener.

In game two, the Cougars were the home team and took a 9-1 win but had to battle to get it.

"After the 13-run first game, we came out a little flat," Largent admitted.

Hughson got on the board first, scoring in the top of the third on a double and a throwing error.

"We got it back in the bottom of the third," Largent noted.

In fact, the Cougars took the lead, after Franceschetti reached on a single and stole second, Pangilinan drilled a two-run homer to put the home team up 2-1 and they never trailed again in taking the win.

Escalon had nine runs on 10 hits with an error. Hughson had one run on five hits and committed four errors.

Justin Martinez went five innings for Escalon, allowing one run, four hits, striking out six and walking six. Largent came on to pitch the final two, giving up one hit, striking out two and walking three in relief.

"It was tough," the coach said of getting on track for the contest. "Monday was our only practice, the field was kind of wet, and we were anxious to get out there (Friday)."

Largent praised the work of sophomore catcher Trey Balber in the contest, catching both games of the doubleheader, calling the games and even getting a couple of back picks of runners trying to advance from second base.

"Trey did a great job," Largent said.

Escalon continues with a balanced effort as well, with Miguel and Franceschetti consistently getting on base and the players up and down the line up hitting the ball well. The Cougars have a team .456 on base percentage and a .361 batting average.

"It's a total team effort," the coach said of putting up the wins. "We have a big week this week with Modesto Christian and we also got a little help, Ripon Christian got beat on Friday so now we have a two-game lead on them."

Weather permitting, Escalon will travel to Modesto Christian for a game on Wednesday and then host the Crusaders on Friday, April 30.