Pirates split doubleheader with Panthers Saturday

MONTE VISTA — Saturday the wind took a break allowing for a fantastic day for baseball. Monte Vista hosted Montezuma-Cortez in an Intermountain double-header. In the early game Cortez was successful in logging a 12-0 win. However the host Pirates would strike back in the late game with a 4-3 victory.
Monte Vista’s season has gotten off to a bit of a rocky start. After offing Olathe to start 2018, the Pirates have fallen into a five game skid before their contests with Montezuma-Cortez. In the Pirate’s defense during those five games their opponent’s records currently combine to 25-12. Most noted in that bunch is Limon who has only lost one game thus far, whom the Pirates met during the Fowler/Rocky Ford tournament.
Saturday it appeared as though Monte Vista may not have been done taking their licks when the early game ended two innings early by a score of 12-0 in Cortez’s favor. Monte Vista found a spark in the late game when Enrique Ortiz shined in his first appearance on the mound.
Montezuma-Cortez struck first when Cole Herman doubled to get Isiah Pena home making it 1-0 at the top of the third. Ortiz got things started for Monte Vista at the bottom of the third with a single to center field. Ortiz would advance himself around the diamond before utilizing a catcher’s error to make it a tied game at one run a piece.
The bottom of the sixth is where Monte Vista gained the game winning advantage. Ortiz got things started by putting one in play to center field. Brycen Hotz followed getting on base with a walk. Ortiz and Hotz got in position for Levi Trujillo’s at bat with steals of third and second. Trujillo’s single brought both runners home giving him a team leading 2 RBI on the day. Trujillo would then get himself home to open the seventh inning with a 4-1 lead.
The Pirates followed their strongest offensive production of the day by nearly losing their grasp on the game at the top of the seventh. A single, a walk and a batter hit by a pitch loaded the bases. Cortez’s Pena hit a grounder that stayed in the infield allowing for the Pirates to collect two outs on a home-first double-play.
The Panthers put  the pressure back on with a double that batted the two remaining runners in for a 4-3 game. Another runner hit by a pitch made things more drastic.  First and second base held runners and Montezuma-Cortez’s Cordell Baer, who is tied for the team lead in RBI’s, took the plate. Monte Vista’s Ortiz didn’t waiver and collected his ninth strike-out of the game to close the book on the Pirate’s second win of the season.

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