Mustangs go 3-1 at Atwater tournament

editorial@sierrastar.comApril 29, 2014 

The Minarets Mustangs baseball team (22-4, 4-0) placed fifth in last week's Atwater Invitational tournament, winning three games and losing one.

Minarets posted a 4-2 win against D-IV Pacheco High in the first game, singles by Sam Romero (.426), and Scott Parker (.354) put the Mustangs up 2-0 early. Zack Clayton's (.368), double in the fourth inning scored Chase Daly (.306) and Cedar Robertson (.349) to complete the Mustangs scoring. Sophomore Hayden Alford gave up three hits and recorded the win.

Fatigue was a factor in the Mustangs second game of the day, an uncharacteristic 12-7 loss in which Minarets pitchers Justin McLeod and Sam Reyes hit 5 batters, walked another six while their defense committed six errors behind them to give Los Banos, 10-8, the win. McLeod surrendered only five earned runs but the Mustangs miscues ended their 13 game win streak. Conly Biglione was 2 for 3, including a triple.

On April 23, the Mustangs returned to Atwater to take on D-IV St. Mary's of Stockton (13-7, 3-1). Parker took the mound and threw a complete game shut out, the Mustangs 1st on the year, surrendering six hits. Senior Jordan Christian had 2 RBI's while Clayton added two. As a result, St. Mary's was eliminated from the Championship game. In 17.1 inning, Parker has yet to give up an earned run.

On April 24, the running Mustangs, who lead the state with 195 stolen bases, got a 11-1 win against the Livingston Wolves (6-15). The team hit .545, collecting 12 hits, five for extra bases with Biglione hitting a double and a triple for three RBIs. Senior Kyle Reed saw action as the result of injured left fielder Zeb Patterson and took advantage of the opportunity, going 2 for 2 including a two RBI triple. Clayton went 3 for 3 with a double and also recorded two RBIs.

The 12 runs given up by Minarets in the Los Banos game cost the team a chance at the Championship. Host Atwater won the tournament with a 7-1 victory against Los Banos.

On April 22, the Mustangs beat the Parlier Panthers 9-1, behind Biglione's 2 for 3, two RBI performance. The team hit .423 on the game collecting 11 hits. Riley Hillerman pitched six innings for the win, with Parker closing out the seventh inning.

Playing 10 games in 10 days has taken a toll on the team. Left fielder Patterson may be lost for the season, with a back injury, while catcher/pitcher Keenan Reardon, the team's leading hitter, may have also been lost following an arm strain. Sophomore catcher Chase Daly has steped into the starting role behind the plate. Left fielder Christain is nursing an ankle sprain while Daly is being treated for a foot injury.

The Mustangs are enjoying a team 1.32 ERA. Chance Carter leads the way with a 5-0 record (1.14 ERA), Reardon is 5-1 (0.59 ERA), Hillerman 3-0 (2.01 ERA), Reyes 3-1 (1.11 ERA), Parker 2-0 (0.00 ERA), Clayton 2-1 (1.43 ERA), and Alford is 1-0 with a 1.68 ERA. The Mustangs are enjoying not just staggering offensive stats, but pitching to go along with them.

The Mustangs host Fresno Christian tomorrow (Friday).

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