Valley Rangers Win After a Slow Start

The Valley Rangers survived three errors and five San Luis Obispo runs in the first inning en route to a 9-7 win in a consolation-bracket game of the National Baseball Congress state tournament Saturday in Santa Maria.

After the first inning, right-hander Lance Gibson retired 15 of the next 17 batters he faced, and Valley crawled back into the game with a run in the first, three in the third and another in the fourth.

With the score tied, 5-5, in the seventh, Valley shortstop Donnie Erickson slammed a three-run home run to make a winner of reliever Tim DeGrasse (1-0).

J. P. Des Enfants and Kris Kaelin each went three for five for Valley (14-4), which will play at 1 p.m. today.

In six innings, Gibson allowed one earned run, struck out five and walked none.

Valley is 1-1 in the double-elimination event that serves as a qualifier for the NBC World Series in Wichita, Kan., this month.

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