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Buhach baseball clinches playoff spot

ATWATER -- Markus Melgosa is the first one to tell you he wasn't much fun to be around after Tuesday's loss to Turlock.

"Right after the game, I didn't talk much," the Buhach Colony senior said.

"I just came home, went in my room and laid in bed. The last two days I've been pretty bummed. All I've been thinking about is baseball."

The smile returned to Melgosa's face right around the fourth inning Thursday as he trotted around the bases after hitting a grand slam.

Melgosa and the BC baseball team rebounded from Tuesday's loss with an 8-1 win over Turlock to clinch a Sac-Joaquin Section playoff spot.

"I might say a few hellos after this one," joked Melgosa.

It was a crucial win for Buhach Colony.

A victory by Turlock (6-4 Central California Conference, 12-12 overall) would have created a three-way tie atop the conference with Golden Valley and Turlock.

Buhach Colony (8-2 CCC, 21-4 overall) would have been on the short end of the conference tie-breakers and needed help to make the playoffs.

"It was scary," Melgosa said. "We didn't want to miss out on the playoffs.

"Tuesday was a slap in the face. We realized what can happen."

Melgosa wasn't the only middle infielder flexing his muscle on Thursday.

His double-play partner Art Corona smacked his first home of the season in the third inning to give BC a 3-0 lead.

"Markus and I joked about it in the field," Corona said. "Another middle infield home run."

Melgosa's grand slam came two innings later and blew the game open at 7-0.

The runs were plenty for Stanford-bound left-hander Brett Mooneyham.

The 6-foot-5 senior struggled with his control -- walking seven batters -- but he gave up just two hits in six scoreless innings to get the win.

"It's usually pretty simple with Brett," Buhach coach Wayne Fitzgerald said. "He's very critical of himself and overanalyzes things.

"Even on bad days, he's pretty tough to hit."

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