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Turlock produces another well-rounded game with strong pitching, hitting
Turlock High’s Kevin Kramer supplied a run in a 4-2 win over Woods Cross High in the Windemuth Classic. - photo by CHHUN SUN / The Journal
MODESTO — Ryan Cumberland figured that he’d inch a little closer to home plate, perhaps putting himself in a danger zone. But the Turlock High sophomore baseball player had a plan. He noticed the opposing pitcher’s tendency to make him reach for the ball in a previous at-bat.
His strategy worked.
Cumberland, a right-hander, caught an outside pitch to send the ball to right field, scoring in much-needed runs against a team that hadn’t lost a game at that point. It was the kind of spark the Bulldogs needed against Woods Cross High of Utah, which had hoped to keep its winning streak alive in the Windemuth Classic at Davis High on Tuesday afternoon. Turlock managed to hold on for a 4-2 win.
Coach Mark de la Motte was concerned about his pitching unit entering the game, but Dylan Silva provided an effective day. The junior thrower finished with eight strikeouts in five innings and got himself out of a couple jams.
“He’s making me more confident in him,” de la Motte said of Silva. “He was kind of wild last year and in the summer. He’s pitching really well for us. He’s really improving. It’s nice to have a couple of left-handers who can go in and throw strikes.”
The effectiveness gave the Bulldogs (13-2 overall) less to worry about while at the plate.
In the third inning, Cumberland went to bat with the bases loaded and no outs. He swung on an outside pitch, creating a frenzy for the runners. Kevin Kramer, arguably the team’s best player, turned out to be one of the team’s fastest runners as well. He nearly passed up teammate Ryan Flood in scoring one of the runs. The scene produced a nice laugh from the small crowd watching.
“He had been working me outside all day,” Cumberland said, “so I got a little closer to the plate. And he threw outside once again and I hit it well.”
It put the lead at 4-0, with Jeremy McDonald earning an RBI-single in the previous inning to put the Bulldogs ahead.
Woods Cross (7-2) provided two runs in the sixth on two hits and two errors, but that rally didn’t last long. Not with the type of pitching Turlock showcased. Cumberland came in to relieve for an inning, shutting down the Wildcats. And then came Vince Wheeland, the Bulldogs’ top pitcher who induced Woods Cross to back-to-back ground outs before ending the game with a strikeout.
The Bulldogs continue the Windemuth Classic today with a 10 a.m. game against Escalon High at Downey High.
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail at or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.