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Wildcats baseball completes sweep of Golden Valley

West Ranch moves to outright lead in Foothill League

Posted: April 26, 2013 11:09 p.m.
Updated: April 26, 2013 11:09 p.m.
 

If it appeared that the West Ranch Wildcats took the Golden Valley Grizzlies lightly to start the game, that message changed midway through the third inning.

At that time, West Ranch replaced starting pitcher Kyle Williams for its ace Cody Bennett, and the Wildcats proceeded to score all its runs in the top of the fourth inning, as they defeated the Grizzlies 5-2 Friday at Golden Valley.

“Besides that one inning, we really struggled at the plate,” said West Ranch head coach Casey Burrill. “We started out flat, but overall in the grand scheme of things, these were two big wins that we really needed to have.”

With both victories over Golden Valley this week, West Ranch (14-7 overall, 8-3 Foothill League) completed the season sweep of the Grizzlies and currently sits alone atop the league standings.

After pitching two innings and recording the win Wednesday, Bennett returned to the rubber on Friday to pitch his team into sole possession of first place.

The senior finished with six strikeouts and two earned runs in his five innings of work.

“I was getting a lot of swings and misses on my curveball today,” Bennett said. “I also had velocity on my fastball, and my change-up was working well for me out there.”

Since stumbling at home against Valencia on March 15, Bennett has picked up a win in each of his last eight outings — with seven coming in Foothill League play.

“This week was a gutsy performance by Cody,” Burrill said. “We went into Wednesday not planning on pitching Cody, and now we ask him to go five today. He was a warrior this week.”

After Bennett’s first inning of work, West Ranch jumped in front by scoring five runs in the top of the fourth inning.

Highlighted by a two-RBI double by Jack Spurlin, the Wildcats tallied four hits and knocked out Golden Valley’s staring pitcher Cole Bygum.

“We started going to the right side and our approach was better,” Burrill said. “It was big for us to put up some runs and get some breathing room.”

Golden Valley (3-19, 2-9) chipped into West Ranch’s lead with two runs in the bottom of the seventh, but the deficit proved too much to overcome against Bennett.

“I thought we played a pretty steady game, and we showed some fight at the end,” said Golden Valley head coach Scott Drootin. “I want to see the same progression (next week) against another good team.”

Golden Valley will be in action next week against Canyon, while West Ranch takes on Hart.

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