Pitchers generally prefer ground balls, but on a day when wind gusts made the backstop sway and sustained winds made every fly ball an adventure, that was even truer.
And when Shadow Ridge’s Antonio Arreola got a ball into the jet stream in the third inning on Monday, the ballpark had no chance to hold it.
Arreola’s two-run blast broke a 3-3 tie, and the Mustangs held on for an 8-4 win over visiting Coronado.
“We’ve been lucky this year where kids have come through in situations where we’ve needed them to, and it’s been different kids at different times,” Shadow Ridge coach Frank Tousa said.
Coronado led 3-2 before a pair of clutch, two-out hits in the third.
Jordan Hand singled up the middle to bring home Tyler Burton, who had led off the inning with a double, tying the game.
And Arreola followed that with his shot to right field.
Hand also had a two-out, RBI single in the bottom of the first to tie the game at 2.
He and Arreola each went 3-for-3 to lead Shadow Ridge’s 12-hit attack. That offense included three bloop doubles that the wind helped push away from fielders.
“We just talked about that, running hard down the baseline and trying to get two with that high pop fly,” Tousa said. “And it worked out a couple times for us.”
The wind wasn’t kind to Shadow Ridge to start the game, however.
Coronado leadoff man Tanner Bellmany hit what looked like a routine fly ball to center, but the ball carried over the head of center fielder Jakob Chambers for a leadoff triple to set up the game’s first run.
Later in the inning, Jacob Klein lifted a shallow pop to right field. Eric Jordan battled the wind and tracked it down, but it went off his glove for an error, allowing the second run to score.
“We told them don’t get down, it’s early in the game, and they stayed focused,” Tousa said.
Jordan and Burton each hit two doubles, and Chambers added a double and two RBIs for Shadow Ridge (4-1), which split a doubleheader with the Cougars (2-3) on Saturday.
“This is kind of the rubber match,” Tousa said. “Winning two out of three from a quality program feels good for our young kids.
“It’s something to build on, and some things to work on, too.”
Contact prep sports editor Damon Seiters at 702-380-4587 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @DamonSeiters on Twitter.