Mustangs hope to stay on a roll entering Classic
Although the Sweetwater baseball team is only play-ing .500 ball so far, the Mustangs have been close to having a 6-0 record.Sweetwater, which takes on Clyde at 4 p.m. today when it begins play at its annual Wood Bat Classic, is off to a 3-3 start. However, those three losses — all of them coming at a tournament in Granbury this past weekend — were by a total of five runs to three teams in the Fort Worth area.The three wins, on the other hand, have been by an aggregate 33-5 score.Sweetwater lost consecu-tive games to Burleson and Granbury 9-7 to begin the Granbury tournament this past Thursday, then lost to Stephenville 5-4 in its first game Friday.But the Mustangs finished on a high note. Immediate-ly after their game against Stephenville, they defeated Ranger Junior College’s JV team by a score of 13-4. Then on Saturday, Sweetwater played Fort Worth Western Hills and won, 9-1.Against Burleson, Sweet-water took an early 3-0 lead only to see the Elks come back with six runs in the third inning and three in the fourth to lead 9-3. The Mustangs scored four runs in the bottom of the frame, but Burleson held on to get the narrow victory.Sweetwater had eight hits including an RBI triple by Greg Aiken, RBI doubles by Stephen May and Gabriel Melendez and an RBI sin-gle by James Clift. Melen-dez’s double scored Dylan Bennett and Clift, and he completed the four-run rally by scoring on a passed ball. The Mustangs had five straight hits in the fourth inning, all with two outs, starting with a double by Shawn Campbell and singles by Bennett and Clift.Clift and Cole Maxwell both pitched.Sweetwater led Burleson by a run after scoring twice in the top of the fourth in-ning for a 7-6 lead. How-ever, the Elks scored three runs in their final at bat to pull out the victory in the bottom of fifth inning.Sweetwater took the lead on doubles by Sean Morrow, May and Clift. Bennett and Ryan Linebaugh had RBI triples and Morrow an RBI single in a three-run second inning that gave Sweetwater an early 4-0 lead. Kaleb Hoover and Aiken pitched.Stephenville took a 5-0 lead after three innings be-fore the Mustangs rallied, closing within 5-4 by scoring a run in the fourth in-ning and three in the fifth.A double by Linebaugh, singles by Morrow and Aik-en and Clift’s sacrifice fly plus a fielding error prod-uced the last three runs and a single, walk, groundout and error scored the first.May started on the mound and hurled a seven-inning complete game. He gave up five hits, struck out five and surrendered just one walk.Sweetwater started slowly against Ranger, as it trailed 3-0 after two innings and 4-2 after 3 1/2 before ex-ploding for 11 runs — its biggest inning of the year — in the bottom of the fourth. Aiken began the inning by reaching on an error and scored on Maxwell’s double. Sweetwater had nine hits in the inning, which also in-cluded RBI singles by Ben-nett, May, Campbell, Aiken, Clift and J.P. Poe plus a bases-loaded walk to Line-baugh and singles by Poe and Quentin Wetsel.Bennett, Maxwell, Poe, Campbell and Wetsel all finished with two hits. Ben-nett and Maxwell had RBI hits in the third inning.Hayden Reeves started on the mound, and he and Poe each pitched three innings.In their final game, the Mustangs scored four runs in each of the first two in-nings and again in the third, and finished with 10 hits as they ended the tournament with a dominating win over Fort Worth Western Hills. Campbell had three hits including an RBI single, and Bennett had a two-RBI double. Bennett was the starting pitcher and threw a six-inning complete game as he allowed four hits, struck out six and walked one.