Los Angeles Preps: Alberto Garcia

North Hollywood's Ruiz aces test in City Section semis

May, 31, 2012
LAKE BALBOA -- There was little doubt North Hollywood’s Jason Ruiz was hungry. He missed all of his sophomore baseball season because he was academically ineligible.

When he came up in the top of the sixth, Ruiz had a chance to feast. He knocked in two runs with a double and paced North Hollywood to a 6-3 win over University in the semifinals of the CIF City Section Division II playoffs at Birmingham High School on Thursday.

“I was just trying to put the ball in play,” Ruiz said. “If you just put it in play, it will find a hole.”

The ball found a big hole. His two-run double broke a 2-2 tie and capped a three-run sixth inning.

Eddie Torres led off the sixth inning with a double and Andrew Marmor followed with a single to put runners at first and third with no outs.

Ruiz came up and drove the second pitch he saw to the fence.

“Our team has a lot of character,” North Hollywood coach Hector Menchaca said. “They don’t give up. They showed that today.”

North Hollywood (18-15) will be playing in the City Section Division II championship game for the second year in a row. Ruiz, a junior, missed out on his team’s trip to the championship game last year. But he worked on his academics and was eligible to play his entire junior season.

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