Late-innings push gives Clovis West series split with Central

Golden Eagles celebrate with Ryan Moran after his two-run double ties the ball game 5-5. NUGESSE GHEBRENDRIAS/THE CLOVIS ROUNDUP

Despite struggling at the plate for part of the game, the Golden Eagles baseball team dug deep and put five runs on the board in the top of the sixth inning, followed by three more in the top of the seventh for an 8-7 comeback victory on the road.  

“We’re going to take it anyway we can get it,” Clovis West head coach Kevin Patrick said. “Obviously, we want to be more competitive in the first five innings, but I think we let some chances slip away.”

After losing a home game 10-6 to the Grizzlies on Tuesday, the Golden Eagles had to respond against one of the top pitchers in the Tri-River Athletic Conference: Ryan Wiltse.

“We were facing a really good pitcher, that guy has been hot. He threw a one-hitter against Buchanan a couple weeks ago and he’s been great for them, so I’m just proud of the comeback and happy about the effort throughout the game and especially the last two innings,” Patrick said.

Karson Simas, Ixan Henderson and Gordon Vaughn combined for six of the Golden Eagles’ 12 hits, while Henderson finished the game with a run and three RBI’s, powering their offense late in the game.

Early on though, all the power emanated from the home-team dugout. Trent Tompkins had three hits, scored three runs and had three RBI’s, all coming from two home runs. His solo blast in the bottom of the fifth, followed by his two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh.

Although late in the game, Clovis West still had more to offer. Bradley Senneway started the rally in the top of the sixth inning with a single, followed by Nathan Baeza who brought in the first run. Their initial effort culminated in a five-run top of the sixth inning.

An RBI single from Noah Galvan, who also pitched four innings, followed by an RBI single from Henderson, which led to a deep shot to center field by Ryan Moran. Moran doubled home two runs, tying the game at five.

Clovis West continued their late-inning heroics with three more runs in the top of the seventh inning. A two-run double by Henderson and an error in the outfield allowed the Golden Eagles to claim the victory in the end.

A victory the Eagles needed to have.

“If we wanted to stay in the race, we needed to get a win today,” Patrick said. “We’ll take it, at worse we’re a couple games back headed into next week, so you hate to say must win early in the league, but it was a must-win game for us today.”

Nugesse Ghebrendrias
For the past three years, Nugesse has been a vital part of the Madera Tribune covering sports, news, entertainment and feature writing. Nugesse’s ability to interact with the community allows him to promote students, athletes and community members with fairness and objectivity.