MODESTO -- Patterson High's varsity baseball team took a three-run lead into the bottom of the seventh inning on Wednesday, March 5, but Modesto Christian High managed to rally by scoring three runs to tie the game and two runs in the bottom of the 10th to win 8-7.
The Tigers (0-2) jumped out to a 6-1 lead after three and a half innings, but Modesto Christian (1-0) tallied five unanswered runs, including a pair of two-out runs in the bottom of the seventh, to send the game into extra innings.
Antonio Bustos of Patterson drew a walk to lead off the 10th inning, went to second on a wild pitch and teammate Kevin Phelps laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Bustos to third base. With two outs, Bustos scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch by Robert Garcia of Modesto Christian.
Patterson pitcher Jared Nothstein walked Andre Edwards and Akin Perkins to start the bottom of the 10th inning, and a balk allowed the runners to move up a base. Darrian Grays of Modesto Christian struck out, but Zack Schott used a squeeze bunt to bring in the tying run and put runners at the corners. After Garcia was intentionally walked to load the bases, Perkins scored from third on a passed ball to give the Crusaders a come-from-behind, walk-off victory.
Andrew Basaldua of Patterson opened the first frame with a lead-off infield single off pitcher Blake Avant, and Bustos reached base safely on a dropped third strike. Travis Lockhart's single to right-center field scored both runners and gave Patterson a 2-0 lead.
Starter Santiago Cantu (four innings, four hits, six strikeouts) retired the first three Crusader batters in order, and Trevor Troxler of Patterson led off the second with a single to left field. Troxler then stole second base and advanced to third on a wild pitch before scoring on a bases-loaded walk to Jake Thompson to give the Tigers a 3-0 advantage.
Jaylen McClendon of Modesto Christian hit a RBI single to center to make it 3-1 after two innings, but Patterson tacked on two more runs in the next frame.
Lockhart walked to lead off the third inning, moved to second on a wild pitch and scooted to third on a passed ball. Troxler's sacrifice fly to center field plated Lockhart, and with the bases loaded, a fielding error allowed Cantu to cross home plate to make it 5-1.
Cantu delivered a two-out single in the top of the fourth, and Troxler just missed a homer off of Avant -- the high-arching ball falling feet in front of the left field fence -- with a RBI double to put the Tigers up by five.
In the bottom of the fourth, Garcia scored on a two-out single down the right field line by McClendon to trim the deficit to 6-2. And a short line drive single just over the infield with two down in the bottom of the fifth by McClendon plated Perkins to make it 6-3.
With two outs in the bottom of the seventh, Garcia made it a 6-4 game with an RBI double before Michael Cummins' two-run double tied the game for Modesto Christian and sent it into extra innings.
Patterson will play a Thursday, March 6 game at Escalon High School. Game time is 3:30 p.m.
Contact Marc Aceves at 892-6187, ext. 28, or firstname.lastname@example.org.