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Bulldogs win twice, qualify for Division-IV postseason tournament
Ceres High School's varsity baseball team has reeled off four straight wins since being upset by first-year Pacheco.

The 3-1 loss eliminated the Bulldogs from the Western Athletic Conference title race.

"That eats at us everyday," Ceres High senior outfielder Nick Welsh said. "It shouldn't have happened. We could have been league champions. Ever since then, we had that fire and drive. We're trying to prove ourselves."

The Bulldogs won twice last week and locked up the WAC's No. 2 playoff berth.

Welsh starred on offense for Ceres High, which improved to 18-8 overall and 8-3 in league.

Nick batted 7-for-8 from the plate with one homer, one double, four RBIs, three runs and three stolen bases.

He struggled earlier in the year.

"I've been talking a lot with my dad," Welsh said. "He's one of my biggest role models. He knows the game inside and out. He's a huge help."

Nick blasted a two-run homer during the Bulldogs' 9-2 win over Livingston on Friday at Art McRae Field. The ball bounced off the top of the left-center field fence.

"It was just a solid line drive," he said. "I didn't think it was going to go out."

Haydon Turpin, Ceres High's workhorse on the mound, notched his 10th victory. The right-handed junior struck out six and walked two. Turpin allowed just two runs and three hits over six innings.

"He's had a great season," Welsh said. "It's nice to see him succeed in something he's worked hard to do."

The Bulldogs collected 14 hits.

Devon Ruger finished 2-for-4 with one double and two RBIs.

Jimbo Pernetti finished 3-for-3 with three runs scored.

Brandon Arevalos finished 2-for-3 with one triple, one RBI and one run.

Ceres High beat visiting Patterson by the mercy rule, 12-1, on Wednesday.

Bulldog sophomore Brad Bussard tossed a no-hitter. He had four strikeouts and two walks during his five-inning gem.

Ceres High had a team batting average of .619 (13 of 21).

Welsh went 4-for-4 with one double, one RBI and two runs.

Brett Conway went 3-for-3 with four RBIs and one run.

A.J. Fontana homered, drove in two runs and scored twice.

Pernetti had two doubles, two RBIs and one run.

Ruger chipped in with one double, one RBI and two runs.

Ceres High will be making its second consecutive postseason appearance.

The Bulldogs qualified despite competing with a revamped lineup.

Ceres High lost three of its top players to graduation, including Brent Ward, Dustin Baisdon and Tyler Cummings.

"This has been a real special season," Welsh said. "We want to stay hot going into playoffs. We all believe in the same goal. We're just trying to leave a legacy behind."

Ceres High will wrap up the WAC season against first-place Central Catholic this Wednesday at Art McRae Field. The game will begin at 4 p.m.

The Bulldogs will face the Valley Oak League No. 2 seed, either Sonora or Lathrop, in the first round of Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV Playoffs on May 16 at Lodi's Tony Zupo Field.