JENNIFER FIERRO • PICAYUNE STAFF
MARBLE FALLS — After escaping Game 2 on March 22 with a one-run win, the Marble Falls High School baseball team left no doubt which was the better team between Rouse and the Mustangs in Game 3.Marble Falls defeated Rouse 8-3 in the series-ending game March 23 after beating the Raiders 5-4 in 10 innings in the second game March 22. The Mustangs won the first game 4-3 on March 19.
“It was a good game,” Marble Falls head coach J.T. Blair said about the third contest. “You never know what you’re going to get on Saturday. If we came out and threw strikes and played defense, we’d have a shot to win.”
The Mustangs scored two runs in the first inning, only to have the Raiders tie the contest in the second. But Marble Falls responded with five runs in its half of the inning.
Blair said his players’ ability to pounce on the Raiders early set a tone for the rest of the game.
And he also noted the hits were spread out among the Mustangs, which made the lineup dangerous.
“We hit some ground balls hard right at them,” he said. “We really hit the ball well. I’m really pleased with our approach and the way we swung the bat.”
Senior pitcher Cody Goodman picked up the victory for the Mustangs. Goodman had been ill during the series.
“What a gutsy performance by Goodman,” Blair said. “He gutted his way through the game, and that’s what we need from him. Our defense made routine plays, and that was the best.”
Senior Cole Ridgely was the workhorse in the series. After pitching all seven innings in Game 1, he was on the mound for the eighth, ninth and 10th innings of Game 2 and made every routine play at third base in the third game.
Blair said third base is a natural spot for Ridgely because of his arm strength and agility.
In the second game, the Mustangs were ahead 4-1 in the seventh inning. But two pass balls allowed two runs to score. By the end, Rouse had tied the game at 4-4.
That’s when Ridgely took over. When senior Mike Richardson hit a one-run single to bring Ridgely home, that’s all the pitcher needed to preserve the victory.
“Give some credit to (Rouse) for coming back,” Blair said. “It would have been really easy for us to get down. Our kids did a great job of staying in the game mentally.”
firstname.lastname@example.org[tabs style=”default”] [tab title=”GAME STATS”]
ON OFFENSE: (Game 3) Marble Falls – RBIs: Domenic Patterson 4, Cole Ridgely 1; Rouse – RBIs: Robert Martinez 2, Colton Matthews 1
ON DEFENSE: (Game 3) Winning pitcher (Marble Falls) – Cody Goodman 2 earned runs off 4 hits, 3 walks and 1 strikeout; losing pitcher (Rouse) — Ronnie Holman 1 earned run off 3 hits with 2 strikeouts
QUOTABLE: “Every district win counts the same. It’s good we can jump out early and win some games early,” Marble Falls head coach J.T Blair said.
RECORDS: Marble Falls is 13-3 overall and 5-1 in District 25-4A; Rouse is 7-12-1 overall and 1-8 in district play.
UP NEXT: Marble Falls at Leander Vandegrift, 9700 McNeil Drive in Austin, 7 p.m. March 26[/tab] [tab title=”DISTRICT STANDINGS”]
Dripping Springs, 8-1
Marble Falls, 5-1
Cedar Park Vista Ridge, 3-3
Cedar Park, 2-4
Leander Vandegrift, 2-7
Leander Rouse, 1-8[/tab] [/tabs]