Three innings and a lot of hits were all that the Lodi’s 10U All-Star baseball team needed to earn a Cal Ripken state berth.
Hitting and pitching gave Lodi a sweep over Escalon in the Cal Ripken 10s District Tournament at Salas Park’s David Akin Field on Saturday with a 15-0 win of the double-elimination tournament. The second game was called after three innings because of the 15-run mercy rule.
The sweep in the double-elimination tournament moves Lodi into the Central California Cal Ripken 10U State Tournament. That will take place in Clovis starting Monday, June 24. According to centralcaliforniacalripken.com, teams are due to report on Sunday.
In two games of the district tournament against Escalon, Lodi scored 24 times. Lodi had 11hits in the second game.
“We did a good job of adjusting; it was a different speed than what they were used to seeing the last few weeks,” said Lodi head coach Matt Dobbins.
Lodi scored seven times in the bottom of the first inning of the second game of the doubleheader. Five hits were to its advantage, which included a triple to right field to Carson Neugebauer and a double off the bat of Matthew DeOliveira. Their teammates Hunter Rau, Maddix Diaz and Vin Casazza, each had a single.
Leadoff hitter Jax Bennett, Dawson Labarthe and Landon Benov each walked in that inning. Bryce Meehleis got on base as a hit batter.
Lodi scored four times each in the second and third innings. In the second, Lodi had four hits; DeOliveira picked up his second hit of the game with a single. Bennett, Meehleis and Labarthe each had a single.
In the third inning, Lodi used two hits, two walks and a fielder’s choice, plus two passed balls and a stolen base to account for its final runs to end the game early.
Lodi finished with 11 hits in the game.
On the mound, Meehleis and Naugebauer combined to toss a no-hitter against Escalon. Meehleis struck out four of seven Escalon batters. Naugebauer fanned three of four batters.
“They’ve been good since the very beginning,” Dobbins said. “From the first time to practice games and last couple of tournaments, it’s been lights out all the way through.”
Lodi 9, Escalon 2 — In the first game, Lodi jumped out to a 4-1 lead after only two innings. Then it added three more runs in the bottom of the third for a 7-1 lead.
“It was a little slow at the beginning,” Dobbins said. “But I think we came on in the second game.”
After Escalon scored its last run on a passed ball in the top of the fourth to make it 7-2, Lodi scored a run each in the fourth and fifth innings for the win.
Contact Mike Bush at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter: @MBushLodiSports.