Wyatt Fields provided 3 1/3 innings of shutout relief pitching on the mound and the Alvin Yellowjackets made an early outburst stand to capture a 7-4 triumph at Clear Brook High School in 24-6A Baseball action Tuesday April 16 in Friendswood, while the Jackets collected the series sweep with a 13-5 victory Thursday night at Nolan Ryan Field.
The Jackets (10-9 overall, 4-6 in the 24-6A Baseball standings), who kept their playoff hopes alive with the series sweep, next face Dickinson April 23 at 6 p.m. and here April 26 at 6 p.m. to close the regular season.
Alvin moved into a fourth-place tie with Clear Creek, who faces Clear Springs in their final district series this week, as well.
“It’s good to get back in the win column,” Alvin head coach George Banda said following the game. “It’s crazy with this district. We still have an opportunity. Tuesday and it makes it real interesting. If we take care of our own, then a lot of things can happen.”
Fields relieved starter Carson Keithley in the fourth and allowed only two hits and one walk. Fields helped his own cause by picking off a Brook runner at first base in the sixth and with the potential tying run at the plate with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, the right-hander retired Travis Watson on a grounder back to the mound.
“It was a real good outing by him (Fields),” Banda said. “Keithley gets tired there through four and Wyatt came in there and did what he was supposed to do.”
Alvin used a double steal on the base paths to push across its initial tally in the first. Jeffrey Myers and Austin Hinson swiped second base and home plate, respectively, while a fielding lapse by the Wolverines’ infield on a routine double play ball off Keithley’s bat paved the way for a four spot in the third.
With the above chain of events leaving Colin Jeter still standing on second base, Erick Vasquez followed with a double to the left-field corner to score Jeter for a 2-0 Alvin lead. Hinson then plated Vasquez with a sharp single to right, while moving to third base on Levi Whitlock’s hit to left. Whitlock promptly stole second base and ultimately joined Hinson in crossing the plate on Tanner Deitrich’s bloop hit to center to increase the margin to 5-0.
The Wolverines answered with a pair of runs during the frame’s bottom half, while RBI singles in the fourth by Christian Whitehead and Sebastian Pichardo closed the gap to 5-4. However, Fields took over for Keithley and retired Tyler Stormer with two runners aboard on an inning-ending long fly ball to Deitrich in center.
The Jackets added two insurance runs in the sixth, as Dillon Thompson dashed home on a passed ball and Caleb Gaston scored from third base on Keithley’s infield hit to short.
In Thursday’s contest, the Jackets overcame an early 5-2 deficit. Kyler Mentzel led the way with six innings of no-hit relief ball on the hill and seven strikeouts, while also leading the Jackets offensively with four RBI’s.
Mentzel plated Deitrich with a third-inning RBI double to put Alvin in front for good at 6-5. Jeter and Whitlock both delivered three RBI’s, as well.
In other area action, the playoff-bound Manvel Mavericks (10-12 overall, 9-5 in 24-5A) rebounded from their series sweep at the hands of Foster with a 26-0 run-ruled romp over Fort Bend Marshall April 16 in Manvel and a 13-1 rout over the Buffaloes Thursday night.
Jaden Johnson drove in five runs to lead the way in the series opener, while Isaiah Walker and Riley Palomarez provided four RBI’s apiece. The Mavs next play Hightower on Tuesday in Missouri City at 7 p.m.
Shadow Creek (15-7-1 overall, 9-5 in 24-5A), who’s also headed to the postseason for the first time ever, hosts Willowridge on Tuesday at 7 p.m.