State

BC gets 'must win' by beating Merced

Buhach Colony coach Wayne Fitzgerald saw the change in Matt Voris on Friday night.

"He pitched tonight," Fitzgerald said. "Right there is textbook difference between being a thrower and and a pitcher.

"He threw the ball up and down. He changed speeds. He pitched ahead. He definitely pitched."

Voris didn't just pitch, he dominated as Buhach Colony beat Merced 3-0.

The senior right-hander struck out nine and only allowed three hits on his way to a shutout.

"He was tough, let's get to the point," said Merced coach Lou Souza, whose team dropped to 6-2 in the Central California Conference.

"He was the difference and they played good defense behind him. Some times you just get outplayed."

It was a must-win for Buhach Colony (4-4 CCC) after Thursday's 4-3 loss to Merced.

BC struck first in the second inning after it looked like Merced might get out of a jam. Buhach Colony loaded the bases with a walk and back-to-back singles by Russel Molina and Robbie Dallas with no outs.

Merced left-hander Andrew Jaurique almost escaped the jam unscathed when he got Kevin Mendoza to hit a ground ball to third. Merced's Derek Slate started initiated a home-to-first double play.

But BC's Daulton Jefferies followed with a chopper that shortstop Chad May charged, but couldn't come up with as Buhach Colony scored twice.

"Chad made the right play," said Souza. "You've got to be aggressive on that ball. You'd like to see him come up with the ball, but he made the right play."

Merced's only big threat came when it loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Voris pitched his way out with a strikeout and a groundout to preserve the shutout.

"I tried to stay cool and composed," Voris said. "The more they yelled, the more it fired me up and gave me more confidence.

"I just tried to hit my spots and stay under control. I didn't want to try to do too much."

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