Thunderbirds fall short despite late surge

Aaron Dunton

It was a game of runs on April 4, when Mesa took on Phoenix College in what would be a very important game for both teams. It safe to say expectations ran high in this game, for second place in the ACCAC was on the line for both teams.

Mesa, now 20-25 on the season, came out firing and ended with a bang, but innings five and six is what eventually doomed Mesa as they went on to lose 10-6.

Starting pitcher Brandon Holdridge came out firing, showing why he had the teams third lowest earned run average.

He would retire his first three batters in record fashion, letting everyone know Mesa had something to prove.

Mesa showed its speed in the bottom half of the inning when Nick Orr stole second.
A Robert Torres single brought Orr in, putting the first run on the board.

Mesa would tack on two more runs in the bottom of the second off Kevin Wells and Dominic Gamboa RBI’s.

Holdridge dominated the third and fourth inning, leaving Mesa with the momentum as the teams entered the fifth.

However, that momentum would quickly change when Phoenix got two quick hits off Holdridge.

A walk would then load the bases as Mesa saw its first scare of the game.

An eventual single and double would bring in four for Phoenix, leaving them ahead 5-3.

It would also mark the end for Holdridge, who ended the game with four earned runs on five innings pitched.

The sixth inning was even worse for Mesa as the first five Phoenix batters would reach base safely.

After another pitching change, Phoenix got three runs off two singles and two more runs off a double, leaving Mesa behind 10-3.

A scoreless seventh left Mesa with six outs to go and a need for eight runs.

In the eighth, Mesa showed signs of life when Nick Morreale and Robert Torres reached base safely.

After an fly out, Rocco Cirelli hit the gap for an RBI single, leaving Mesa down 6.

The pressure then fell on Kevin Wells and Dominic Gamboa, who both wouldn’t disappoint.

Both produced two strike singles, driving in two more runs.

The game was now 10-6 in favor of Phoenix. More importantly, Mesa had the bases loaded and slugger Nick Orr was up to bat.

However, Nick would just miss the fences as he flew out to right center, ending the eighth.

A scoreless ninth left Mesa’s late push unnoticed as the T-birds once again lost a heartbreaker.

About Author

These are archived stories from Mesa Legend editions before Fall 2018. See article for corresponding author.

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