The Alliance First National Spartans scored five runs in the 12th and picked up a lightning-shortened 9-4 win over the WESTCO Zephyrs Tuesday night at Cleveland Field.
The game was a continuation of a game that was started on May 16. Both teams resumed play in the top of the third for the 9-inning game that went three extra innings.
Alliance coach Carlos Palomo said his team found ways to score when they needed.
“The boys kept competing,” Palomo said. “We never got down and handled adversity real well. We were down 4-1 early in the game. We weren’t trying to get them back with one swing. We were just playing our game. We got good bunts down when we needed to and we manufactured runs. We had good timely hitting.”
Alliance scored two in the top of the ninth to tie the game at 4-4 to force extra innings. Joel Baker came up clutch in the ninth with Trevor DuBray scored from third on a perfectly executed suicide squeeze bunt by Joel Baker to tie things at 4-4.
Palomo said Baker’s bunt in the clutch situation was huge.
“That was clutch for him,” he said. “It doesn’t matter who it is in the lineup, they have to be ready to roll and do what is best for the team. I am proud of the boys of what they did today.”
WESTCO had a prime scoring opportunity in the 10th to win the game with the bases loaded but couldn’t get the walk-off run in for the winner.
Neither team scored in the 11th. The 12th was when Alliance went to town, scoring five times on five hits. The 12th started as Chase King was hit by a pitch. Joel Baker singled, and Collin Schrawyer reached on an error to load the bases. J.J. Garza then had an infield hit to score one. Alliance scored two more before Caeson Clarke doubled in two more runs for a 9-4 lead.
That was when the lightning show started and after a short delay, Zephyr coach Jeremiah Luber just called the game with Alliance getting the win.
“It was back and forth, and we had a chance to win and we didn’t get it done,” Luber said. “It was disappointing.”
Luber said the errors were costly in the loss to Alliance.
“We have to clean it up,” Luber said. “You are not going to win any game with six or seven errors. That was disappointing to see. We will see if the mental focus is still there and hopefully we come back tomorrow and play a little better baseball.”
Pitching was pretty good in the game. Trevor DuBray picked up the win in relief of Peyton Pinedo. DuBray tossed 5 1/3 innings in not giving up a run while allowing just three hits. DuBray struck out 11 WESTCO batters and walked two. Pinedo, the starter, allowed four hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings.
“I had everybody available and Pinedo gave us what he could,” Palomo said. “DuBray filled it up and attacked and challenged their hitters. And they had good defense behind them.”
WESTCO got eight innings out of Creighton Dike, who went 8 1/3 innings in relief of Panduro. Dike struck out eight in the game. Panduro, who started back in May, just went 2 2/3 innings in striking out five.
Zephyrs lead early after scoring three runs in the sixth for a 4-1 lead. Izaiah Torres started the frame with a single. Jack Jones and Dike each walked to load the bases. With two outs, Tate Carson doubled to score three runs for the 4-1 lead.
Alliance came right back to score one in the seventh to cut the lead to 4-2. The Spartans then faced the must score situation in the ninth to force extra innings.
WESTCO had an opportunity to score in the 10th. Jerrett Richter started things with a single. After stealing second, Jack Jones was intentionally walked. After a fielder’s choice hit, Panduro was intentionally walked to load the bases but WESTCO couldn’t get the winning run in.
Alliance had 10 hits in the contest. Chase King had three hits with a run scored and RBI.
WESTCO had seven hits. Carson had the only extra base hit with a double. Carson also had three RBI.
WESTCO returns to action Wednesday when they host Chadron.
Alliance returns to action Wednesday when they face a Ogallala in a doubleheader on the road at 1 p.m. Then Alliance will play Rapid City Post 22 on the road and then play Rapid City 320 on Sunday in Alliance.
Alliance 000 010 102 005 – 9 10 1
WESTCO 000 103 000 00x – 4 7 7
WP – Trevor Dubray
LP — Creighton Dike
2B – Alliance (Caeson Clarke). WESTCO (Tate Carson).