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Ceres High, Los Banos battle
First-place Dawgs maintain one-game lead over Tigers following conference split
Drew Stahl pitched a gem of a game while leading Ceres High to an 11-1 five-inning victory over Western Athletic Conference -rival Los Banos on Wednesday at Art McRae Field. Stahl tallied 10 strikeouts.

Ceres High's varsity baseball team maintained its one-game lead over Los Banos in the Western Athletic Conference standings this past week.

The Bulldogs and Tigers split a two-game series.

"We're in a good position," Ceres High head coach John Bussard said. "In the long run, we still control our own destiny. All this means is we're not going to go undefeated in league."

Ceres High defeated Los Banos 11-1 in five innings on Wednesday at Art McRae Field.

The Bulldogs pounded 13 hits and committed just one error.

"It's the best game we've played all year," Bussard said.

Bulldog senior Drew Stahl (3-0 WAC) pitched a gem of a game while shutting down the Tigers.

Stahl yielded just one run and two hits with 10 strikeouts and four walks over five innings.

Drew also contributed on offense with two runs and one single.

Izaiah Hernandez batted 2-for-3 with one homer, four RBIs and one run.

Brett Conway batted 1-for-2 with three RBIs.

Merrik Price batted 2-for-3 with one double, two RBIs and two runs.

Haaydn Martinez batted 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs.

Brad Bussard batted 2-for-2 with one double and one run.

Ricky Lopez batted 1-for-2 with two runs.

Caleb McDade batted 1-for-1 with one run.

Brent Bussard batted 1-for-3.

Ceres High lost 8-5 at Los Banos on Thursday.

Ahead 5-4, Ceres High surrendered four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.
The loss snapped the Bulldogs' eight-game unbeaten streak.

"We stranded too many runners on base," coach Bussard said. "Defensively, we did okay. We made three errors; only one led to a run. That wasn't the difference in the game. Our pitchers didn't have their best outings."

Ceres High ace pitcher Brad Bussard earned a no-decision.

He gave up four hits and four runs (three earned) with three strikeouts and four walks in 41/3 innings.

Brent Bussard batted 1-for-4 with one RBI and one run.

Brad Bussard batted 1-for-4 with two RBIs.

Martinez batted 1-for-2 with two runs.

Price batted 2-for-3 with one run.

Hernandez batted 1-for-3 with one run.

Conway and Lopez collected one RBI apiece.

Second-place Los Banos (9-4, 4-2) dealt first-place Ceres High (12-4, 5-1) its first loss in conference play.

"Going undefeated would have been nice," coach Bussard said. "Ultimately, we want to win the league and get that No. 1 seed for playoffs. Being defending league champs, we're going to get every team's best effort. We just can't lose focus."

Ceres High will face WAC-opponent Livingston twice next week.

The Bulldogs will host the Wolves on April 22 and play at Livingston on April 24.

Both games will begin at 4 p.m.