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Bulldogs struggle early, lose 10-7 to Raiders
Central Catholic's and Ceres High's varsity baseball teams locked up the Western Athletic Conference's No. 1 and 2 seeds for the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV Playoffs on May 4.

The Bulldogs and Raiders closed out the regular season last week.

Ceres High suffered a second-inning meltdown on its way to a 10-7 loss to Central Catholic on Tuesday, May 8 at Art McRae Field.

"I thought we finished strong," Bulldogs head coach John Bussard said.

Ceres High standout pitcher Haydon Turpin (9-4) sustained his first loss since March 30.

Turpin, 6-0 in his previous outings, lasted just 12/3 innings. He surrendered seven runs on five walks, two hits, two wild pitches, one hit batsman and one balk.

The Bulldogs trailed 8-1 when Haydon exited the game.

"There was no talk about giving him a rest," Bussard said. "We had a week off before playoffs. We had to get him some work. He just had a rough patch."

Bulldog freshman Brad Bussard was solid in relief of Turpin.

Bussard had six strikeouts and one walk. He allowed two runs and four hits in four innings.

The two teams combined for 23 hits, including 13 by Ceres High.

Jimbo Pernetti batted 2-for-4 from the plate with one homer, three RBIs and two runs.

Brett Conway finished 3-for-4 with one double, one RBI and one run.

Brandon Arevalos finished 3-for-4 with two doubles and one RBI.

Devon Ruger went 2-for-4 with one RBI and one run.

Nick Welsh scored twice and singled once.

A.J. Fontana collected one single and one RBI.

Jimmy Bates tallied one run.

Turpin singled.

Ceres High battled back and avoided losing by the mercy rule.

The Bulldogs trailed 10-7 heading into the final inning. Ceres High put two runners on base and brought the tying run to the plate.

The Bulldogs made just one error during the game, two less than Central Catholic.

"Honestly, I thought we outplayed them," John Bussard said. "We had more hits. We played better defense. That one inning took the wind out of our sails. Even though we lost, it doesn't slow our momentum going into playoffs."

Ceres High had its four-game winning streak snapped last week.

The Bulldogs (18-9, 8-4) will face Valley Oak League No. 2 seed Sonora (17-9, 9-5) in the first round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV Playoffs today at Tony Zupo Field in Lodi.

The contest will get underway at 4 p.m.

The Wildcats edged the Bulldogs 3-2 in non-league play earlier this season.