PLEASANT HILL — The Modesto Junior College baseball team returns home today, broomsticks in hand. The Pirates dropped Diablo Valley 5-3 Friday for their second straight win over the Vikings in three days. Modesto (13-12, 6-8), tied for fourth in the Big 8 Conference standings, will seek a series sweep over DVC today at MJC at 1 p.m.
Center fielder Jake Hawkins provided most of the punch for Modesto's latest win with four RBIs, three on a bases-loaded triple in the sixth that increased the Pirates' lead to 4-1.
Relief pitcher Robbie DeVries saved the win for Kevin Walker by allowing only one run during the last 4º innings. Patrick Mulry's sacrifice fly in the eighth inning added an important insurance.
Earlier, Hawkins' double brought in Damien Arteago for MJC's 1-0 lead in the second.
NEAR NO-HITTER Cal State Stanislaus' Ross Gonsalves doubled on the first pitch of the bottom of the ninth, thus avoiding a no-hitter by Cal Poly Pomona freshman Max Bethell. The Warriors' eventually scored two runs during an otherwise sobering 17-2 California Collegiate Athletic Association loss at Turlock.
Bethell walked three through eight hitless innings before Gonsalves ripped it near the left field fence. Pomona (19-15, 12-13) plated seven runs in the top of the ninth to set the stage for Bethell.
Byron Lemon, the starter for the Warriors (7-25, 4-21) allowed six runs in the fourth on four straight RBI hits. Pomona gashed Stanislaus pitching for 19 hits.
The series continues with a doubleheader today at 11 a.m.
WARRIORS DROP 3 Cal State Stanislaus lost three tough games to open its own 26-team Mizuno Tournament of Champions. The Warriors extended 16th-ranked Sonoma State to nine innings before they fell 7-5.
Stanislaus then was beaten by Western Oregon 7-6 and, finally, the Warriors rallied for three runs in the seventh but still lost to Notre Dame de Namur 10-8.
The home team was led by Sarah Locarnini who went 6-for-12 for the day including a home run, a triple, two doubles and six RBIs.
MORE QUALIFIERS MJC singles contestants Alex Jackson, Austin Tay and Rick Peloso all won their matches today at the Big 8 South Conference Tournament in Fresno. That clinched their qualifying to the Regional and State Championship later this month in Ojai. Peloso worked hard to beat Justin Yang of Reedley 6-4, 3-6, 10-8.
MJC MEN WIN The Pirates emerged from "hell week" training and, despite their fatigue, won the final relay race to beat Sequoias 64-49 at the Dave Ashleigh Acquatic Complex. Tim Richard, one of the state's fastest swimmers, joined with teammate Darius Mehring Ford to lead Modesto to the win.
WOMEN PREVAIL The MJC women, like the men, spotted Sequoias many diving points but rallied to win 74-34. Katie Sinclair in the 50 freestyle and Kim DeLeon in the 100 backstroke both posted impressive swims.