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Regular season winding down for baseball, softball
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Ari Velasco makes the throw toward first after fielding the ball in action on the road against Riverbank. Times Photo By Ric McGinnis

Escalon’s varsity baseball boys racked up two more victories this past week, defeating Modesto Christian in their home and away series in Trans-Valley League play. Meanwhile, the varsity softball girls fell in two games on the road, to Riverbank and to Hilmar, dimming their chances of making the postseason. Here’s a look at the action from this past week on the diamond.



It was a quiet yet successful week for the varsity baseball boys, said head coach Gino Franceschetti, as they got a pair of lopsided wins over the Modesto Christian Crusaders.

“We played MC and 10-runned them twice, 19-1 and 17-4,” said Franceschetti of the run-shortened games. “Modesto Christian struggled to throw strikes and both games turned in to a walk-a-thon.”

As such, noted the coach, there were not many outstanding plays, as the Cougars were patient at the plate and got more runs via walk than hits.

“They were very slow-paced games,” admitted Franceschetti.

The varsity and JV boys were scheduled to play Atwater in non-league action on Friday, April 26 but the contests were rained out by a sudden, unexpected deluge that hit the region at midafternoon.

Both the JV and varsity were to close out the regular season this week, at home against Ripon on Tuesday, April 30 and then on the road to face Ripon on Thursday, May 2.

“If we sweep Ripon, we win the TVL,” Franceschetti said of the importance of the final two league games for the varsity squad. “I know the boys are really excited for this week. We are playing for a TVL title for the first time since 2018. I expect the boys to come out with a lot of energy and play well.”



With hopes of starting the second half of league play off strong, the games did not go according to plan for the varsity softball girls. They lost to Riverbank, 11-6 on April 24 and to Hilmar, 11-4 on April 26.

Against Riverbank, Madison Babasa had a 3-for-4 afternoon and Ari Velasco was 2-for-3.

“Jayci Trimble went 2-for-4 and hit her first career home run,” head coach Caitlin Brooks said.

But the offense could not get enough runs on the board to take down the host Lady Bruins.

Back on the road later in the week, Hilmar put 11 runs on the board against Escalon as well to take the win. Babasa was 2-for-4 with an RBI in the loss, Velasco went 3-for-4. Shelby Wilder, Violette Kent and Lizzy Allan all had hits as well.

“We have our Senior Night this Wednesday (May 1) against Hughson and then we host Ripon on Friday,” Brooks said.

The Lady Cougars are looking to get a couple more wins this final week.

At the JV level, the young Lady Cougars blasted their way past Riverbank by a 28-2 final on Wednesday but then lost by a lopsided 30-9 decision to Hilmar, splitting their games for the week.

“It was a great team win, all girls took the field and contributed in some way,” head coach Lexy Underwood said of the victory at Riverbank.

Aniston Hunt started on the mound and had three strikeouts and one walk. Mia Bracamontes pitched an inning as well. Chloe Green and Gianna Wilson each had three hits.

“As a team we had 16 hits and no errors on defense,” Underwood said.

At Hilmar, she said the team struggled with staying in the game.

“Mental mistakes took this game from us,” Underwood admitted. “We got out hit 23-8.”

Green and Isabella Podwinski Grant each had a pair of hits in the contest.

“I’m looking forward to playing this week and going up from this game,” Underwood said of her team bouncing back for the home contests.