West Ranch's Nico Valdez is greeted by Austin Hernandez after scoring a run in the third inning. Jayne Kamin-Oncea/For The Signal
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West Ranch baseball’s Nico Valdez had to be patient in his first at-bat on Thursday.

Strike. Ball. Ball. Home run.

Valdez set the tone for the Wildcats, who took down Golden Valley 12-2 at Golden Valley.

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The two-run homer produced the only runs of the first inning for either team and was the foundation for the rest of the game’s offensive action.

“We had some offense early,” said West Ranch coach Casey Burrill. “And it’s kind of contagious. We had a lot of guys that were offensive today. It was a big first inning.”

The Wildcats (14-5 overall, 7-0 in Foothill League) scored four more runs in the third inning.

Golden Valley’s Leon Jackson can’t reach a triple by West Ranch’s Ryan Camacho who then scored on a throwing error by Jackson in the third inning. Jayne Kamin-Oncea/For The Signal

Will Chambers hit a two-run double to open up the scoring in the frame. Not to be outdone, Ryan Camacho homered to pull the Cats ahead 6-0.

West Ranch’s Christos Stefanos hit a two-run single for West Ranch in the fourth inning, then Evan Gellatly hit a sacrifice fly for a run in the fifth.

Stefanos hit an RBI-single in the fifth, followed by RBI singles from Chris Freeman and Ryan Camacho.

Stefanos finished the day 4-for-4 with three RBIs.

“He’s been our best run producer over the past few weeks,” Burrill said. “He’s a guy that comes to the plate, sees all kinds of different pitches and has been real successful. He’s been kind of our go-to guy and producing for us.”

West Ranch’s JD Callahan earns a save as he pitched two scoreless innings in the game against Golden Valley. Jayne Kamin-Oncea/For The Signal

Tristan Lacefield was the top performer for the Grizzlies (6-11, 1-6) with a two-run double in the fifth inning.

Cats Pitcher Timmy Josten allowed three hits and struck out four in five innings.

“With the offense clicking early, Timmy kept them off the scoreboard for four innings,” Burrill said. “It made the game open up. Both teams using a lot of subs, it had the feeling early in the game that it was over.”

Golden Valley is on the road against Canyon on Wednesday. On the same day, West Ranch takes on Hart, which snapped its four-game losing streak after defeating Valencia on Thursday.

Saugus 9, Canyon 2

JP Flores, JC Choy, Tony Jacob, Kyle Dawson and Michael Frazier each had two hits for the Centurions (8-14, 4-3). Frazier had a three-run home run.

Saugus pitcher Garett Lite allowed two runs in the first four innings, and Brandyn Cruz threw three perfect innings for the save.

For Canyon (1-19, 0-7), CJ Dowell and Nick Jenkins each had two hits.

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Haley Sawyer
A Pennsylvania native, Haley Sawyer has covered sports across the country. She is a graduate of Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh and primarily covers Football, boys basketball, girls soccer and girls golf for The Signal.
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