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First Bank Classic Ends Tournament Action
Saturday, March 11, 2017 07:21

LUBBOCK - The Panthers played in their third and final tournament of 2017 at the First Bank Classic, an annual three-day event.  Permian dropped three games by a one-run margin.  All of those were lost with the assistance of an opponent rallying in the seventh inning.

Permian opened the tournament on Thursday with a close game against Coronado. The Panthers took a 2-0 lead in the first at-bat, but the T-Birds answered with a run in the second inning to cut the lead to one. Both teams were able to each add a run to the scoreboard in the third frame. After that, bats went silent on both sides of the field the remainder of the game. Mojo was able to preserve a 3-2 victory to start tourney play on a positive note.

In the second game against Plainview, Permian squandered opportunities to take control. Several runners were left stranded on the bases on multiple occasions. The Bulldogs scored the contest's first run on a passed ball in the top of the second inning. The Panthers answered with three consecutive base hits from Jacob Flores, Ricky Campa, and Mitch Riddle to load the bases. Seth Higdon's RBI single tied the game, and Christian Tschauner drew a walk to reload the bases. The three runners were unable to advance from there. Permian again filled the bases with one out in the fifth inning, but a pair of strikeouts prevented the Panthers from converting the threat into runs. Plainview went on to claim a 6-1 win.

The Panthers watched both of Friday's games slip away in the bottom of the seventh inning. In the morning game, Permian and Lubbock High battled back-and-forth through five innings to give the Westerners a 7-5 lead. In the top of the sixth, the Mojo bats came to life to the tune of five runs in the stanza. Walks by Hector Arevalo and Tanner Adams led to an RBI single by Daniel Enriquez and the assault was on. Riddle drew a free trip to first to fill the bases. Another run was forced in when Nate Kizziar was hit by a pitch. Rhett Bratcher slapped a two-run hard hit ball to left field to give Mojo a 9-7 lead. Kizziar was able to steal home to up the score to 10-7. Lubbock was held in check in the bottom half of the frame.

The Black Cats were retired in order in their last turn at the plate. The Westerners' seventh inning dagger came largely by way of walks. Four walks and three singles resulted in loaded bases and four runners crossing the plate. Lubbock rallied to claim a 11-10 win over the Panthers.

In the matinee clash with El Paso Socorro, Permian trailed by four runs after five innings. The Panthers erupted with seven runs to take a 7-4 lead in the top of the sixth. Mojo loaded the bases on three consecutive singles from Bratcher, Adams, and Enriquez.  Permian got on the board when Tyson Banks drew a walk to force Bratcher across the plate. Adams scored on a Higdon RBI single, and Enriquez crossed the plate when Tanner Payne was hit by a pitch. The Panthers tied the game on a Riddle RBI base hit to right field.

Permian wasn't through. Easton Hernandez belted out a two-run double, and Riddle scored on a mishandled grounder to the second baseman. The Bulldogs answered with two runs in the bottom half of the sixth to cut the Mojo lead to one. Socorro converted a double and two singles to trim the lead to 7-6. Three straight strikeouts retired the Permian batters in their last at-bat. The Bulldogs utilized a double, walk, and two stolen bases to setup the second seventh inning dagger of the day. A two-run hard hit grounder found open green space in left field for Socorro to rally back to hand Permian a 8-7 loss.

Permian faced El Paso Americas on Saturday morning. The Blazers broke a deadlocked game in the third inning with a pair of runs, but the Panthers answered with two of their own in the top of the fourth. Bratcher, Enriquez, and Banks collected base hits to load the bases with no outs. Higdon and Tanner Sullivan took their turns at bat and each drew a walk to force two runs in.  Three consecutive outs would leave three Mojo runners stranded.

Permian came back to take a 3-2 lead in the fifth frame. With Hernandez and Bratcher standing on second and third base, Enriquez put down a beautiful bunt to allow Hernandez to cross the plate. The Blazers matched the run in the bottom half to knot the score at 3-3. Permian would strand two runners in the top of the seventh inning, but were unable to produce any runs. Americas loaded the bases after a Permian fielding error and a pair of walks in the bottom of the seventh. A base hit to right field brought the game to an end.

In the final game of the tourney, Lubbock Monterey jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead.  The Panthers answered that in the third inning with five runs.  Mojo loaded the bases and posted the first run when Bratcher was hit by a pitch. A sacrifice fly to right field netted another run. Adams drove in another run on an RBI double. Permian successfully added two more runs before the inning ended to take a 5-4 lead. The Plainsmen collected two runs in the bottom of the fourth frame to retake the lead.

Bratcher scored on an Adams RBI single to centerfield to knot the game at 6-6 in the top of the fifth, and the Plainsmen recorded a goose egg in the bottom of the inning.  The Panthers failed to break the tie in the top of the sixth frame, but Monterey unleashed an eight-run barrage to take a 14-6 lead in the bottom half. That how the scoring would end as Permian could not answer in its last at-bat.

With the tournament appearances behind them, the Panthers will now turn their focus to the District 2-6A race and its slate of games.  Permian has a pair of road dates this coming week with Midland High (March 16) and Midland Lee (March 18).
Time to man up and put it all together as a team.  Claws Out!


  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PERMIAN 2 0 1 0 0 0 0   3 5 1
CORONADO 0 1 1 0 0 0 0   2 3 2
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PLAINVIEW 0 1 2 0 0 2 1   6 7 1
PERMIAN 0 1 0 0 0 0 0   1 8 4
WP:  n/a | LP: S. Higdon
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PERMIAN 0 2 0 2 1 5 0   10 11 4
LUBBOCK 0 1 5 1 0 0 4   11 16 1
WP:  A Valerio | LP:  P Hutson
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PERMIAN 0 0 0 0 0 7 0   7 12 1
SOCORRO 0 2 0 1 1 2 2   8 14 2
WP:  I Campa | LP:  T Marquez
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PERMIAN 0 0 0 2 1 0 0   3 6 3
AMERICAS 0 0 2 0 1 0 1   4 7 2
WP:  J Galindo | LP:  T Luxton
  1 2 3 4 5 6 7   R H E
PERMIAN 0 0 5 0 1 0 0   6 7 1
MONTEREY 4 0 0 2 0 8 x   14 16 0
WP:  J Moreno | LP:  T Marquez




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