The Minarets Mustangs (8-5) dropped a tough game to Fresno Christian (9-9) 11-9 last week.
Hunter Thompson took the mound for the Mustangs and had a rough go of it in the first inning. With two hit batters and two walks, the Eagles were up 2-0 with no earned runs.
Anything that could go wrong went wrong in the April 4 game. A passed ball off catcher Connor Reardon scored yet another unearned run, and three pitches later the bases were loaded after another walk. A drive to center resulted in a tag up from third that put the Eagles up 4-0. After an error from the Mustangs, their fourth in just two innings of play, Fresno Christian used a decoy runner at first base to draw a throw from Thompson, which ended up in center field. The third inning ended 6-0 Fresno Christian.
Aaron Hall led off the 4th for the Mustangs, with a triple to the gap, scoring the first run for the Mustangs off a Tyler Painter single. Painter took over on the mound but didn’t fair much better than Thompson, surrendering two hits, along with two walks to give the Eagles their first earned run of the game. A failure to charge the ball at third put yet another Eagle runner aboard. With bases loaded, a drive to the fence scored two more runs to put the Mustangs in a deep hole, 10-1. A balk from Painter scored the final run of the game for the Eagles as they were flying high thanks to Mustang struggles on defense.
Down 10-1 in the top of the sixth, Walden coaxed a walk and later scored. Chris Bowe recorded an RBI as he doubled in the gap, and the Mustangs came to life. Coach Darrah went to the bench in hopes of rallying the troops. Conti worked the count full and walked on a wild pitch, scoring Bowe from third. The Eagles didn’t help their cause has they proceeded to throw the ball into center field, scoring two more Mustangs to make it 11-6 after six innings.
Blumberg again rose to the occasion, keeping his team within striking distance as he pitched a scoreless sixth. E.G. Walden opened the seventh with a walk. Followed by a walk to Reardon, then Hall delivered with a single to score Walden.
Mustangs center fielder Drew Robertson doubled to score Reardon and the Mustangs pulled within two runs. With two men on for Minarets, Conti ran into the Eagles first baseman. Following a comebacker to the pitcher, he was ejected from the game, the second Mustang ejected as Luke Batty was also thrown out for comments made from the dugout.
It was a game the Mustangs would rather forget, with five errors. Friday’s game with Parlier was canceled to be rescheduled at a later date.
The Mustangs take part in this week’s Selma Greater Kiwanis 61st Annual Baseball Tournament April 10-14th. The tournament will include a field of 15 teams including the Mustangs, Yosemite Badgers, Arvin, Sequoia, Chavez, Riverdale, Lindsay, Coalinga, Immanuel, Head Royce, McLane, Sierra Pacific, Shafter, Firebaugh, and host Selma.
The tournament will be played on three fields, Selma, and Immanuel’s new varsity and JV fields. The Mustangs drew a tough schedule for the opening round, a 9:30 a.m. start against Coalinga and a second game directly following against Firebaugh. April 11, the Mustangs face Arvin, and April 12 Minarets will face Sierra Pacific. The Championship game will be played Thursday.