Rams run-rule Texico
In two different sports this season, the Texico boys have brought a perfect record to Portales. Both times, they made the 30-minute trip home with a loss in hand.
This time, it was on the baseball diamond as the Rams recovered from an early 3-0 hole and blew past the visiting Wolverines 14-4 in a game called in the fifth inning.
link Staff photo: Kevin Wilson
Texico baserunner Jarron Hill escapes the tag attempt from Portales catcher Matt Martinez during a first-inning rundown at Portales.
Things looked promising for Texico (13-1) early on, who capitalized with three unearned runs. Leadoff hitter Jarron Hill, on third due to an error, beat out a two-out rundown, and two more Wolverines scored on an error and a single.
From that point on, though, Portales junior Rey Ornelas was solid, throwing just 38 pitches in the next three innings — after a 26-pitch first — and at one point retiring seven straight on just 13 pitches.
“How we handle adversity is going to determine the outcome of the game,” Portales coach Dusty Nusser said. “Credit to Rey; he could have folded up after the first, but he kept fighting back. He pounded the zone and gave the defense a chance behind him.”
Ornelas allowed four runs, all unearned, on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
Meanwhile, the Ram offense bided its time until it exploded for a six-spot in the third. The Rams sent 11 to the plate, with left fielder Emilio Lovato putting Portales up for good with a two-run double.
Lovato finished 2-for-4 with three batted in, while junior catcher Matt Martinez had two-run singles in the fifth and sixth innings.
“Get to the bullpen,” Martinez said. “That’s when we start to tee off. It takes us time, getting the pitch counts up.”
Portales chased starter John Myers out in the fourth after pushing across nine runs — six unearned. The Rams scored five more without recording an out against Rafael Maldonado in the fifth.
Texico coach Ty Thatcher thought Myers pitched well, but didn’t get some of the breaks he needed.
“We had the errors multiply and that’s how baseball can be a little cruel,” Thatcher said. “John had some good moments, got the ground balls he needed. We didn’t play really well behind him.”
Thatcher resisted pulling out the Wolverines’ full pitching arsenal, noting that a single game Texico’s district doubleheader Saturday against Tucumcari carries significantly more weight than trying to keep a perfect season going.
Jarret Faust went 3-for-4 and scored four times for Portales, which is off until it hosts Lovington Tuesday.