Trimble Tech’s big inning sinks Coyotes

ANNA – The green-clad Trimble Tech Bulldogs of Fort Worth enjoyed a fine St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, topping Anna, 12-7, in the Coyotes’ final tune-up before district play. The Bulldogs employed a 7-run second inning — helped along by Anna miscues — to take control and then survived a 4-run rally for the win.

“I thought we did a good job of coming back and trying to make a game of it,” Coyotes head coach Joey Hector said. “We had one bad inning where they kind of kicked us out of the game. We did a good job of coming back and trying to rally the troops and make it a competitive game.”

Indeed, after trailing 8-2 Anna battled back and by the fifth inning it was 8-6 — anybody’s game. But Trimble Tech iced things in that fifth with four more runs, most of them courtesy of Vincent Burton’s 3-run double to the left field wall. Zach Howard, Lawrence Goade and Koy Harris each posted two hits to lead the Coyotes’ offensive attack. The teams would tally seven hits each, with the Bulldogs eventually matching Anna in errors, with three apiece.

“I guess our colors do go good with today,” Trimble Tech head coach James Reid said. “We played pretty well. We still made some mistakes.”

Reid noted that his team’s strengths are fluid.

“Really, it depends on the day,” he said. “Some days we play defense well, some days we hit the ball. Like, today, we hit the ball real well. But our pitching has been really consistent.”

Trimble Tech started district play last week with an extra-inning win over Forth Worth South Hills.

Four Coyote pitchers worked this night in preparation for Anna’s fast-approaching district slate. Howard started, going 1.1 innings and allowing three hits with two strikeouts and four walks. Harris came on in the second for 1.2 innings and gave up a hit with no walks, no “Ks”. Daniel Scott threw the fourth and fifth frames, allowing three hits and three walks with one strikeout. Jeran Lewis closed it out with no hits and a walk over the sixth and seventh innings.

“We came in today knowing each kid was going to throw about 35 or 40 pitches,” Hector said. “We got scouting reports on a couple of teams in district and hopefully we’ll be able to match our pitchers up with their weaknesses and be competitive.”

Opening on the mound for the Bulldogs was Jose Oropeza, who went 2.2 innings, allowing three hits and three walks, with two strikeouts. Ivan Vasquez tossed the four-plus remaining frames and gave up four hits and struck out three.

The Coyotes’ defense settled down over the late innings with fine plays, especially from shortstop Colton Brown, who twice gunned down runners from deep in the hole.

“I thought Colton Brown, he had a tough go of it the first three or four innings,” Hector said. “Both on the base paths and in the field, but late in the game he made some phenomenal plays. Those were as good a plays as you’re going to see from a high school shortstop.”

Anna (7-6-3) led, 1-0, when the Bulldogs came to the plate in the second inning. A throwing error from second to first, followed by a dropped ball on a blooper to left and a balk call opened the scoring gates for Trimble Tech. Then two wild pitches moved runners along and the Bulldogs led, 2-1. After a pitching change, back-to-back singles scored two more and the lead was 4-1.

Later, a Trimble Tech runner stealing home on a pick-off try and another error moved the margin to 7-1.

The teams then traded single runs until the bottom of the third when the Coyotes erupted for four scores. Daniel Scott opened the inning with a walk then stole second. Howard’s double to center scored Scott and Anna’s deficit was 8-3. Lewis’ ground out to the pitcher moved Howard to third and, with two outs, Harris’ line drive to center brought Howard home. Goade then singled to right, moving Harris to second. The Coyotes closed to within 8-5 when Harris scored on a Bulldog error. Goade would then steal home on pick-off try at first base.

Hector said his focus is more on Anna, not on specific opponents at this point.

“We’ve got so many things we’ve got to work on. Until we take care of ourselves it’s not really going to matter who we’re playing.”

The Coyotes opens their district slate at Aubrey on Tuesday, March 21.

Coyotes roll past Lucas Christian

Anna raced to a four-run lead then erupted for eight more runs in the fifth for a 14-4 win over Lucas Christian at home on March 14.

“They’ve got a district ball game on Friday so they kind of ran out of arms,” Coyotes head coach Joey Hector said of the Warriors. “That’s why we were able to put the 8-spot up. Early, they had some of their arms — their mid-week guys — and they did a good job. It’s just when they ran out of arms it got ugly.”

Jeran Lewis started at pitcher for Anna and worked three innings before Colton Brown came on to close it out. Lewis allowed six hits and three earned runs while striking out three. Brown gave up two hits and one earned run in two innings of work.

“Those are guys that, once we get into district, might not get a whole lot of innings,” Hector said. “We’ve got one more pre-district game on Friday to get our arms ready to go, then we crank it on Tuesday. So we hope once we get to Tuesday we’re not using our No. 5, 6 and 7 (pitchers).”

Four Lucas Christian pitchers allowed only six hits, but they walked 13. Anna’s Lawrence Goade and Lewis each posted a game-high 2 RBIs. Lewis slapped a triple in the game and teammate Zach Howard belted double. Koy Harris, Colton Brown and Jacob Williams each had singles for the Coyotes (7-5-3).

“I think we had a pretty good evaluation early on,” Hector said. “… We’ve got a couple of guys starting to swing the bats a little bit better. Defensively, we’re still killing ourselves. We’ve been pretty solid in the past, defensively, then right now we’re just really … pretty shaky in several spots. We’ve been trying to address it all year and we haven’t done it yet. So we’ve got to figure out something in five days.”


Melissa pitchers toss perfect game

In Melissa’s final tune-up before district play, two Cardinal pitchers combined to “no-no” – no-hit-no walk – Frisco Lebanon Trail in a 10-0 shutout at home on March 16. Andrew Cole and Krisjon Segleski, backed by a 14-hit attack, stymied Trail Blazer hitters for five innings, with Cole going the first three and Segleski closing it out. Cole struck out four in the rout and Segleski sat down three, including the two of the Trail Blazers’ final three batters.

Tate Whittington pounded out a three hits for the Cards, as Cole, Adam Davis and David Crees each collected two. Brady Morrison led the Melissa with 2 RBIs. Lebanon Trail starting pitcher Mitch Gardner surrendered 11 hits and six earned runs before giving way to Keaton Belew in the fourth inning.

The Cards (5-12-1) open district play at home versus Bonham on Tuesday, March 21.

Cards lead early, fall to Whitehouse

Melissa’s Cardinals out-hit Whitehouse, 9-3, but also out-errored the Wildcats, 4-0, en route to a 7-3 non-district loss at home on March 14. Tate Whittington, Brady Morrison and Andrew Cole collected two hits each for Melissa, with Whittington and Adam Davis each posting a double. The Cards led, 1-0, until the fourth inning when Whitehouse struck for three runs.

Morrison went six innings on the mound for Melissa (4-12-1), allowing three hits and three earned runs while striking out two, before giving way to Davis in the seventh. Whitehouse pitcher Bryce Cundieff scattered eight hits and fanned six Cards in 6.2 innings of work. The Class 5A Wildcats advanced to the state semi-finals last year.