Stallions get three-game sweep of Apaches
Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera South pitcher Joseph Cosio scattered five hits through the first four innings in Thursday’s win over the Sanger Apaches. He allowed four runs after running into trouble in the fifth inning, but picked up the win.
With three four-run-plus innings over a two-game spread, the Madera South Stallions baseball team picked up the team’s first County/Metro Athletic Conference sweep in the program’s history with three wins over the Sanger Apaches.
The Stallions got a complete game shutout from Murf Gray to win 4-0 on May 18. They scored nine runs in the first two innings Thursday and held on for a 9-7 victory Thursday at Eddie Chapa Field.
On Saturday, the Stallions completed the sweep by coming back from a three-run deficit for a 5-3 victory in Sanger.
“That’s huge,” head coach Alan Sandoval said. “We hit a bump in the road losing six straight in the CMAC. This is what we needed this week. We needed to win the series, but to sweep them is the cherry on top. We’ll take any win.”
The Stallions takes their three-game winning streak into a three-game series with San Joaquin Memorial-Fresno this week before finishing out the regular season next week against Madera.
Madera South 9, Sanger 7
The Madera South Stallions scored four runs in the first inning and five more in the second to open a 9-0 lead.
However, they had to hold off the Apaches in the late innings. Sanger scored four runs in the fifth and three more in the sixth to make a game out of it.
Joseph Cosio was excellent though the first four innings. He scattered five hits with three strikeouts. However, he ran into a wall in the fifth. The first seven batters reached base before he was relieved by Jair Alvarez.
Overall, Cosio picked up the win in 4 1/3 innings. He allowed 11 hits and four runs with four strikeouts. Alvarez had trouble finding the strike zone and walked three batters and allowed three runs in 1 1/3 innings.
Brian Monges came in relief and shut the door. He struck out all four batters he faced in 1 1/3 innings for the save.
Moges had two hits at the plate with a triple. Murf Gray had two hits with two RBIs. Jasir Alvarez drove in two runs and Anthony Gamiz also hit a double.
Monges led off the bottom of the first with a line drive to right centerfield. He raced around the bases for a triple. Gray followed with a single up the middle to drive in Monges.
Elijah Tang reached on a bunt single to put two on. A.J. Rocha singled to left to load the bases.
Xavier Cantu drew a walk to force in Gray. Jasir Alvarez singled to right to drive in Tang. Jair Alvarez grounded into a double play, but Rocha scored for a 4-0 lead.
In the second, the Stallions kept the pressure on. Gamiz split the right-centerfield gap for a double. He advanced to third on a Monges single.
Gray singled home Gamiz for a 5-0 lead. Monges and Gray advanced on a wild pitch.
Tang struck out, but the ball went past the catcher. Monges came in to score and Gray advanced to third while Tang advanced to second.
Rocha walked to load the bases. Cantu followed with a single to right to drive in Gray. Jasir Alvarez hit a fly ball to right to drive in Tang. Alvarez’s twin, Jair, singled to left to drive in Rocha for a 9-0 lead.
Unfortunately, that was all the runs the Stallions scored. They had just one hit over the next four innings. Madera South put six runners on base in the final four innings, but couldn’t add to its lead.
Sanger was silenced by Cosio through the first four innings. He allowed just two baserunners to reach scoring position and didn’t let them score.
However, Sanger battled back when its first eight batters reached base in the fifth inning. The Apaches scored four runs off of Cosio before he was relieved.
Jair Alvarez walked the first batter on four pitches. He got a lineout to Gray and Gray doubled off a runner at second to end the inning.
In the sixth, Alvarez walked the first batter. He got a strikeout and a lineout for the first two outs of the inning. However, he allowed a single and a walk to load the bases. A wild pitch and a single allowed three more runs to score to put a little panic into the Stallions.
Enter Monges. He calmly struck out the first batter he faced on three pitches. He struck out the first two batters he saw in the seventh. An error and a catcher’s interference call put the tying run on base. Monges struck out the next batter on a full-count pitch to end the inning for a 9-7 victory.
Madera South 5, Sanger 3
SANGER — Fresh off of honoring eight seniors, the Sanger Apaches took advantage of a shaky first inning from Monges to score three runs.
Monges settled down after the first inning and didn’t allow another run. He allowed three hits in the first, but only three hits over the next 4 1/3 innings.
Overall, Monges allowed six hits with three runs. He walked three and struck out five to pick up the win.
“Monges settled down,” Sandoval said. “I think he got squeezed a little bit in the first inning. But, he did what he’s done all season. He really wasn’t going to be a guy in our rotation. He came in and showed us he has to be in the rotation.”
Gray tossed the final 1 2/3 innings. He allowed two hits and struck out two for the save.
Gray and Josiah Meza each hit doubles for the Stallions. Gamiz was the only Stallion with a multi-hit game.
Monges recorded two quick outs in the first. However, a walk, double and two singles drove in three runs for the early lead.
Monges got through the next three innings rather easily. In the fifth, he allowed a single and a stolen base. The next batter singled up the middle, but Tang came up throwing from centerfield and threw a strike to catcher Cantu. Cantu swiped the tag on the runner for the first out of the inning.
Monges got a flyout and a strikeout to get out of the inning. In the sixth, he struck out the first batter and the next batter reached on an error. Gray came in relief to close the door on the Apaches.
Sanger put some pressure on Gray in the seventh. After the first batter struck out after a 10-pitch battle, Gray allowed a walk and two singles to load the bases.
Gray faced a 3-1 count before getting two strikes for his second strikeout of the inning. He got a lineout to Monges in centerfield to end the game.
“With Murf on the mound, I feel it’s going to be okay,” Sandoval said.
Madera South started to get to the Sanger starter in the fourth, but left the bases loaded with one out.
Gamiz started the ffith inning rally with a single to left-center. Monges singled to center.
Gray doubled to left-center to drive in Gamiz and put runners at second and third.
Tang stepped up with a single to left to drive in Monges to cut the lead to 3-2.
Rocha drew a walk to load the bases. After a change in pitchers and a strikeout, Jasir Alvarez singed to left-center to drive in Gray and Rocha for a 4-3 lead.
After a strikeout, Gilbert Moisa was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Gamiz stepped up for his second at-bat of the inning and singled up the middle to drive in Rocha for a 5-3 lead.
That was enough for the Stallions to record their first CMAC sweep in school history.