Indians win opener, host Haxtun Saturday
Yuma High School’s baseball team will host Haxtun on Saturday for its home opener, weather permitting.
The Indians opened the 2019 season this past Monday at Caliche, cruising to a 20-0 and 15-1 sweep of the Buffaloes.
Yuma is ranked No. 8 in the CHSAANow.com Class 2A Top 10 poll. No other Lower Platte Activities Association team is ranked. Sedgwick County, which has won the LPAA for five straight years, will not field a team this season due to a lack of players.
Haxtun, while still in the LPAA, drops down to 1A for the postseason and is ranked eighth in the 1A poll.
The season opener was moved up one day, from Tuesday to Monday, due to weather concerns. While Tuesday ended up being very nice, everything turned out all right for the Monday afternoon double dip.
Senior Paul Brophy was the surprise starter for the Indians. The southpaw is currently taking treatments for cancer, but was given clearance to play Monday.
He came through with flying colors as he struck out eight in three innings. The game was called after that as there is a new rule in which a 20-run mercy rule goes into effect after three innings, along with a 15-run rule after four, and still the 10-run rule after five.
Monday was the first time the Indians had been outdoors since preseason practice began. They showed little effects of that, as they jumped on the Caliche runner for five runs in the first inning. Trevor Salzman had a two-run single, and Conner McCoy followed two batters later with a two-run triple.
The Indians added two in the second as Chase McCreath walked and scored on a wild pitch, and Steven Wells singled and scored on a bases-loaded walk Giovanni Rodriguez.
The floodgates opened in the third as Yuma scored 13 runs on just five hits. Four Caliche errors, four walks and a hit by pitch helped Yuma’s cause. Salzman scorched a three-run homer to left field and also had a double in the third-inning outburst. Manny Tena and McCreath each had a RBI single.
Meanwhile, Brophy faced only seven batters through the first two innings, striking out five. He dealt with some traffic in the third as a walk and back-to-back singles loaded the bases, but he escaped the jam with a swinging strikeout. He yielded two hits and walked two while striking out eight.
Offensively, Salzman was 3-for-3 with a double and home run, five RBI and three runs, Wells one hit and scored three runs, Tena one hit, two RBI and three runs, McCreath one hit, one RBI and three runs, Rodriguez two runs, McCoy a two-run triple and one run, Brophy two runs, Fabian Salcido one hit and two runs, and Cayden Lynch one run.
The Tribe had to go six innings in the nightcap to complete the sweep, 15-1.
Tena hit a solo homer in the first inning. McCreath then singled and scored on Rodriguez’s single. Alex Falconburg reached on an error and scored on a wild pitch in the third.
Yuma pushed its lead to 10-0 with seven runs on three hits in the fifth. Tena had a one-run double and Salzman a one-run single in the rally.
The Indians almost got the win in five innings, but Caliche scored one run with two outs in the home half.
Yuma tacked on five more runs in the top of the sixth, highlighted by Falconburg’s double and Wells two-run single. The Buffaloes were held scoreless in the home half, ending the game.
Fabian Salcido went the first three innings on the hill to get the win. He struck out eight while allowing one hit and walking one. Falconburg went 1-2/3 innings, striking out three and allowing one hit on one run while walking five. Tena went 1-1/3 innings, striking out two.
Falconburg hit a double and scored one run, Tena had a homer, double, two RBIs and scored three runs, McCreath one hit and three runs, Salzman one hit, one RBI and one run, Rodriguez two hits, one RBI and two runs, McCoy one RBI, Christian Hawley one RBI and two runs, Salcido two RBI, and Wells one hit, three RBI and one run. A pinch runner scored two runs running for McCoy.