Stallions upset Bears in Div. IV playoffs

The Madera South Stallions baseball team felt the sting from a slap to the face after it received the No. 14 seed in the Div. III playoffs last week.

Despite the lack of respect of playing in the County/Metro Athletic Conference, a predominately Div. I and II league, the Stallions put away Central Sequoia League champion Selma, the No. 3 seed, 7-4, to open the playoffs Tuesday.

Although the Stallions finished the CMAC season 4-11, five of those losses were in extra innings and the Stallions were also 6-2 against teams in Div. III, including a 4-3 win on March 10 against the Bears.

The Stallions faced sixth seed Immanuel-Reedley in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

In Tuesday’s victory, the Stallions banged out 15 hits and got a quality start from Carlos Gonzales.

Gonzales tossed a complete game and allowed seven hits, three earned runs with six strikeouts.

Jeremy Flores and Caleb Bertoncini each had three hits. Flores added a triple and a double while Bertoncini also hit a double. A.J. Rocha hit two doubles and Kingsley Thomas hit a triple.

The Stallions opened the scoring in the second inning. Rocha opened the inning with a double. He went to third on an Alonzo Tovar single and scored on Oscar Velasquez’s single to right.

Selma tied the score in the bottom of the inning with a lead off double, a groundout and a single. Madera South added three runs in the third. Flores led off the inning by reaching on an error. He stole second and scored on Bertoncini’s double. Bertoncini went to third on a Gonzales fly out and scored on a Jalen Gray single.

Rocha followed with a double to deep center and Gray raced around the bases to score for a 4-1 lead.

Madera South made it three straight innings with a run in the fourth. With one out, Flores doubled to right center, went to third on an error and scored on a Bertoncini single.

Selma added a run in the fourth with a hit batter and a double for a 5-2 Stallions’ lead.

Madera South added two more runs in the fifth. With one out, Tovar was hit by a pitch, but was forced at second. Velasquez went to third on a Ramon Uribe single to right. Flores singled to right to drive in Velasquez. Uribe advanced to third and scored on an error for a 7-2 lead.

The Bears added a run in the sixth and seventh innings. Gonzales hit the first batter of the seventh, but got back-to-back groundouts. He hit another batter and an error allowed a run to score. However, the next batter grounded out to give the Coyotes a 7-4 upset victory.