By Greg Perkins
Holbrook’s Roadrunners owned a three-game winning streak after defeating Mogollon 14-4 on Monday, but that streak was snapped by the Payson Longhorns Tuesday in a 10-0 shutout. Both games were played at home.
After giving up two first inning runs to the Mogollon Mustangs, Holbrook fought back to tie the game in the second inning. The Birds moved in front with two more in the third, then opened the floodgates with a seven-run fourth inning. The Mustangs scored two runs in the top of the fifth, but Holbrook closed the game out under the mercy rule with four runs in the bottom of the inning.
Devin Nez earned the victory on the hill, working 42/3 innings. He faced 32 Mustang batters and gave up four runs, all earned, on three hits with 10 strikeouts and a walk. Lanny Newton-Pender pitched a third of an inning, striking out one of the two batters he faced.
At the plate the Birds finished with 15 hits and left seven on base. Scottie Gishie went 2 for 2, walked twice, had two RBIs and scored three runs. Trevor Barton was 3 for 4 with a double and scored once. Carlos Quintana was 2 for 4 with three RBIs. Nick Robinson went 1 for 2, drew one walk, had an RBI and scored twice. Newton-Pender went 2 for 4 including a triple, an RBI and scored two runs. Nikko Ferniza was 1 for 4 with a double, reached once on an error, had one RBI and scored two runs. Buddy Wagoner was 2 for 4 with two doubles, two RBIs and scored two runs. Julian Garcia went 2 for 4, walked once and scored twice. Adryan Fulton was 1 for 3 and scored once.
On Tuesday the Roadrunners quickly found themselves in a hole they couldn’t dig out of. Payson scored three in the first, then added four in the second to take a commanding lead. After a Holbrook pitching change the Longhorns scored once in the fourth, then finished the game off with two runs in the sixth.
Holbrook scattered just four hits in the six innings, failing to score any runs. The Birds made two errors and left five on base. Robinson, Ferniza, Wagoner and Fulton each went 1 for 2 at the plate.
Quintana worked the first two frames, facing 17 Longhorn batters. He allowed seven runs, six of which were earned, on seven hits with four strikeouts and walked three. Wagoner pitched four innings, facing 19 batters. He gave up three runs, all earned, on eight hits and struck out three.
The Roadrunners headed into this weekend’s three-day tournament at Estrella Foothills with an overall regular season record of 4-6. Following the tournament they will host Blue Ridge on Wednesday, April 9, then play at Show Low two days later.
By Greg Perkins