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Woodcreek overpowers EDH North, wins 10/11 Pool B

Two Malone homers close things out
By: Kurt Johnson, The Press Tribune
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A steady stream of offense was the key as the Woodcreek 10/11-year-old all-stars battered El Dorado Hills North 13-1 Thursday night in pool play action at the Little League District 54 tournament at Granite Bay’s Feist Park. Woodcreek claimed the top spot in Pool B with the win, which began with eight runs in the first two innings and took five innings before Woodcreek gained the 10-run advantage required to invoke the mercy rule. Justin Watari opened the contest with a bunt single, and then a Tyler Bounds single and a walk to Tyler Malone jammed the bags with no one out. Justin Pejovich chased home a pair of runs with a single before a Clayton Hall sacrifice fly scored the final run of the stanza to give Woodcreek a 3-0 lead. Malone took the ball for Woodcreek at the outset, and tossed two perfect innings, with three strikeouts before yielding the bump to teammates Zac Erixon and Bounds to take it the rest of the way. A five-run second got some big help from a pair of EDH North miscues, but Andrew Grinder (double) helped get things started so that Watari’s sacrifice fly followed by run-scoring hits from Malone, Pejovich (double) and Hall could deliver the scoring. A Luke Johnson double in the third ended a long string of hitless innings against Woodcreek pitching, but El Dorado Hills could not put anything on the scoreboard. Malone continued to swing the big stick for Woodcreek down the stretch, as he led off the fourth with a solo home run, and then ripped a towering two-run fly ball home run to finish the Woodcreek scoring in the fifth. An Erixon single, a ground-rule two-bagger by Grinder and a Bounds single also factored into the four-run fifth. Brendan Galbreath finally got his EDH team on the board in the bottom of the fifth, as he reached on an error, and advanced around to third on a second error before scoring on a wild pitch to get the zero off the final box score. A walk and a Sean Campbell double put two aboard, but a pop out to short put the game to bed. Woodcreek was back at Feist Park to mop up pool play against EDH South on Friday night, but the real test begins next week when the 10/11s move on to a four-team double-elimination tourney for the District 54 title. Woodcreek will open that round of play, most likely against Maidu (3-1), who currently sits second in Pool A, in a 5:30 p.m. Tuesday night tussle.