SACRAMENTO -- Oakdale High School produced the start to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV baseball playoffs it expected.
The rest of the playoff pool would never admit to it of course, but there would be no shame in describing the Mustangs' 11-1, five-inning mercy drubbing of Rio Linda on Wednesday at McAuliffe Field as scary.
Junior ace Justin Jones, with his lengthy hair falling from his cap, improved to 10-0 with a three-hitter of the 58-pitch, nine-strikeout, no-walks variety.
And while the top four hitters in the Oakdale lineup managed just two hits, the bottom four combined for seven.
The defending section-champion Mustangs (22-3-3) will play Placer on Saturday in Game 1 of a best-of-three series at McAuliffe. Placer defeated River City 6-5 in nine innings.
"We're glad we got past the first round, but we're not done yet," said Jones, who threw 43 strikes and 15 balls.
Jones struck out the side in the top of the first, and two strikeouts in the fifth finished the Knights (14-14). Rio Linda's only run, which was unearned, came in the third on an error, an infield hit and a legitimate RBI single by Justin Cater.
"We had pretty good focus," coach Hondo Arpoika said. "We kicked a couple of balls, but they shook it off and played pretty clean for the most part."
Two errors was about it on the negative side. Jones placed his fastball, curve and changeup right where he wanted them -- changeups mostly away and fastballs tight -- and Oakdale sprayed the ball all over the field.
Catcher Edward McGrath and right fielder Clayton Wagner, hitting eighth and ninth in the order, were a combined 5 for 6 with two doubles and six RBIs. No. 6 hitter Nick Vandertuig finished his day with a two-run homer that sailed high and came down on top of the left-field fence.
Those three and No. 7 hitter Logan Bruce combined to score nine runs. Jones, hitting fifth, scored the other two.
"We're ready for it. Our preparation is there definitely," Wagner said. "We're just going to keep going."
EAST UNION 9, CENTER 1 -- Marshall Swift scattered six hits in pitching a complete game, made one of several impressive defensive plays and had the biggest hit of the night with a bases-loaded triple as the Lancers (13-10) advanced with a big win over the Capital Valley League-champion Cougars (17-11).
East Union will begin a best-of-three series against Bear River on Saturday.
"You look at the nine runs, and that's fantastic. But the story of the night was Marshall's pitching and our defense," East Union coach Dan Triglia said. "We made some outstanding plays, and he made a couple himself."
BEAR RIVER 5, MANTECA 2 -- The Bruins (17-8) scored four runs in the bottom of the first en route to beating the Buffaloes (15-12-1). A passed ball on strike three started the rally, and Brandon Casey's two-run double finished it.
Toby Fox walked one and struck out nine, but the Buffaloes were held to two hits by Bear River ace Vince Viola (10-1), who walked five and struck out eight.