It wasn’t the outcome that Basic’s baseball team had hoped for.
But the Wolves shouldn’t focus just on their 5-3 loss to Chatsworth (Calif.) on Wednesday in the championship game of the Sierra Vista bracket of the Blazer Spring Bash. Coach Scott Baker believes that just making it to the title game shows that the team might be ready to win bigger games down the line.
“It means a lot any time you get to a championship game,” Baker said. “They’ve put themselves in a position to where they believe in themselves now. And you need to be able to get to championship games to know that you actually can do it.”
Chatsworth scored two runs in the top of the seventh to down Basic. With one out, Michael Baregamyan walked, and Micah Ortiz lined a soft liner to left.
Logan Green fielded the ball in the outfield and quickly fired to third baseman Isaac Perez, who made a diving tag to try to get Baregamyan. The umpire ruled Baregamyan safe, and Perez was ejected for arguing the call.
Garrett Kueber then lined an RBI single to center to break a 3-3 tie, and the Chancellors added a run on a sacrifice fly.
The seventh wasn’t the first time controversy seeped into the game. Basic led 2-1 entering the sixth, but Chatsworth tied it on an RBI single by Thomas Palomera. Then with two outs and an 0-2 count on the batter, Chatsworth’s Riley Conlan stole home to give his team a 3-2 edge.
The pitch was close to the strike zone, and Baker came out to argue that the batter moved up in the box to interfere with the catcher attempting to make the tag, but the play stood.
Basic tied the score in the bottom of the sixth when Perez doubled with one out and went to third when Jeryd Reuss misplayed the ball in the outfield.
Ryne Nelson then hit a grounder to short, and Perez slid in safely when the catcher couldn’t hang onto the throw and complete the tag.
“We for sure preach to our kids that we’re going to win or lose the game,” Baker said of the controversial calls. “The players are going to win or lose the game. And we came right back and put together some quality at-bats, but things just didn’t go our way today.”
Nelson allowed four earned runs on five hits in seven innings for Basic, giving the Wolves another quality performance on the mound.
Basic allowed just eight runs in five tournament games, including three shutouts. The team’s 7-3 semifinal win over Faith Lutheran earlier Wednesday broke a streak of five shutouts.
“We’ve been throwing the ball real well,” Baker said. “They’ve bought into the philosophy for sure of throw strikes and if you get hit, you get hit. And they’re doing a real good job of that right now.”
Contact prep sports editor Damon Seiters at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-380-4587. Follow him on Twitter: @DamonSeiters.