Miners open WYL play with sweep of Pioneers
A lot has happened the past two weeks. A lot of drama, a lot of runs, and a complete transformation of the El Diamante Miners. In the beginning of 2018, run support had been a big issue for the Miners. All the pressure was being put on the starting pitching to keep the Miners in the game, but now that the bats have come alive, this has now become one of the most dangerous teams in Division II. If not the most dangerous.
In the four games the Miners played over Spring break, they exploded for a total of 40 runs scored. The two most notable games on the offensive side were an 18-1 beatdown against Bakersfield and a thrilling 15-14 loss to Porterville. In one day alone, the Miners tallied 32 runs. Even though the tournament didn’t end the way people throughout the program had wanted, the vibe was different. El D ended the tournament with a 2-2 record, and although the two losses were pretty heartbreaking, nobody flinched. Those four games served as a giant leap in the right direction. The bats had come alive in an electrifying way, and it gave the Miners all kinds of momentum heading into league play.
Once they stepped on the field again against Mt. Whitney, the Miners picked up right where they left off.
It was fireworks from the very beginning, when literally the first pitch of the game – and of league play – was sent over the fence. They had jumped out to an early lead and immediately put the pressure on the Pioneers to respond. From that point on the Miners had the game well in control. Riley Creech battled his way through the Whitney lineup and provided another quality start to keep the Pioneers in check.
More insurance runs were provided, and Chace Watson put the finishing touches in the 7th to seal the 7-3 win. Two days later it was a pretty similar sight.
The starting pitching was strong again in the second game of the week, paving the way for the Miner offense to get back to it’s old tricks. After scratching out four runs of their own, the Miners carried a 4-0 lead heading into the 7th inning.
Even though the Pioneers had only notched one hit through 6 innings, they didn’t go down lightly. The chased the Miners’ starter out of the game when they drove in their second run of the inning on a ground ball that just snuck by the diving glove of Cole Yoshida. The tides had turned and just like that it was a ballgame all over again. However, Chace Watson came in the game with 2 outs and, once again, slammed the door shut on a Whitney comeback. The Miners snuck by with a final score of 4-3, completing the sweep of Mt. Whitney and giving the Miners a 2-0 WYL record right out of the gates.
Twitter: @Chandler7Lucas | Read all of his articles HERE.