Taking on rival Ripon in a pair of Trans-Valley League games this past week, both went in the win column for the JV Cougar baseball team. Both were also shutout victories for the young squad.
Tuesday, it was a 5-0 win at home for Escalon.
“Tanner McCrary went 1-for-2, he had a two-RBI double in the sixth and it had been 0-0 until then, a pitcher’s duel,” explained coach Ken Baptista. “Steven Grossi was the winning pitcher, he went six-and-two-thirds, allowed three hits, no earned runs and struck out eight. We played good defense behind him.”
Handcuffing Ripon for the bulk of the contest, Grossi didn’t need too much help offensively but his teammates came through.
Colton Lowney came on in the top of the seventh to record the final out with two men on base.
“Tanner was at 97 pitches, Colton got the save,” added Baptista.
On the road for the Thursday, April 14 game at Ripon, the floodgates opened for the JV boys as they pounded the host Indians in a 13-0 decision.
“We hit five home runs,” Baptista said. “Ripon has a short field and the wind was blowing out to left.”
That set it up nicely for the Cougars, who got back-to-back homers from Grossi and McCrary in the fourth, Cole Gilbert and Nash Satnat in the sixth. Gilbert’s was a three-run blast, Grossi’s was a two-run shot.
Lowney got the start and the win, with six innings pitched, 13 strikeouts, three hits and one walk. The game ended after six because of the 10-run rule.
“We had 14 hits,” added Baptista of the outstanding day at the plate for his team.
They improved to 4-0 in league play with the wins and this week, take on Mountain House. They were scheduled to travel on Tuesday, April 19 to face the Mustangs after The Times went to press and will host the team on Thursday, April 21.
Currently, they have no games scheduled next week as Modesto Christian, their varsity counterparts’ opponent, does not field a JV team.