STOCKTON — The Turlock High baseball team rode a wave of momentum heading into the final game of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I South Tournament at Klein Family Field at the University of the Pacific. After a convincing 7-3 game one win over St. Mary’s that dealt the Rams their first loss in 16 games dating back to April 10, the Bulldogs were unable to overcome an offensive outburst from St Mary’s in an 18-4 game two loss, securing the SJS South title for the Rams on Tuesday.
Turlock coach Mark de la Motte went with freshman Nick Voumard, who beat Beyer last week in his first career varsity start, to throw in the second game.
Voumard was unable to match his quality start of a week ago in the tournament semi-final. The freshman was relieved in the second inning with two outs after UC Berkeley-bound Louis Lechich lined a single off of the second base umpire into right field that loaded the bases for the Rams.
St. Mary’s (25-7) brought all nine hitters around to score in the top of the third inning, including eight runs before recording the first out of the frame. A leadoff walk, four singles, two doubles, two triples and an error all contributed to a total of nine runs for the Rams in the inning.
St Mary’s, which only managed three runs against Vince Wheeland in game one, returned to form in the offensive department in game two. After recording only six hits in game one, the Rams bounced back to look like the typical St Mary’s offense that has averaged double-digit runs over three games in the postseason.
In the opening inning, St Mary’s matched its game one run total by bringing home the first three batters of the game. Voumard issued a leadoff walk to Alex Michaels followed by a single by Mitch Walding. Lechich brought home Michaels with a double under the glove of second baseman Ryan Flood, sending Walding to third. After an RBI groundout from left-fielder Kurt Smith, Lechich scored on a wild pitch that went to the backstop making it 3-0.
Turlock, which finished its season with a 24-8 record, managed to engineer three runs in the fourth inning and one more in the bottom of the fifth to avoid the 10-run mercy rule. The Rams added on five more runs in the top of the sixth to insure the win.
Wheeland picked up the game one victory, giving him a perfect 13-0 record in 2010.