Tribe has outside chance at hosting regional

Maybe, just maybe, the Yuma High School baseball team can sneak into the top eight of the Class 2A RPI.
If so, the Indians will find themselves hosting a four-team regional on May 21, with a chance to advance to the state quarterfinals the following weekend.

They have some difficult challenges coming up to close out the regular season, a twin bill at Burlington on Saturday, and another double dip Monday at Byers, but it is incredible the Indians are even in the hunt after starting the season 0-5.
“At one point early in the season you thought it would never happen,” coach Brady Nighswonger said. “I feel like we are playing good baseball right now. We’ve cleaned up some stuff from early in the season. We still have rough stretches, but they’re not as frequent.”
The Tribe had won nine of its past 12 heading into this past Tuesday’s regular season home finale against a very good Class 3A Brush squad. They had won four straight, with LPAA sweeps over Wiggins and Holyoke, to climb above .500 for the first time this season at 9-8.
The 16-3 loss to Brush dropped the Indians back to .500, but remains in the running for a prime regional spot.
Yuma had climbed to No. 10 in the RPI over the weekend, but dropped to No. 12 as of Tuesday, but was up to No. 11 as of Friday, and still has everything in front of it entering the final four games.
It definitely will not be easy, but that is also the reason the Indians have a great chance of climbing up the RPI standings in the coming days.
Burlington entered this week with a 12-5 record, and sat at No. 5 in the RPI. Byers was 8-10, and No. 17 in the RPI
“We’ve got a couple of big (doubleheaders) coming up,” Nighswonger said. “Definitely some good RPI numbers coming up for us.”
The Indians almost assuredly will move into the top eight — the top eight in the RPI get to host the four-team regionals — if they can somehow win their final four.
“We’re going to get tested for sure the next couple of weeks,” Nighswonger said.
Yuma followed up on last Tuesday’s key LPAA sweep at Wiggins by closing out league play Saturday with a 14-2, 10-5 sweep at a struggling Holyoke squad.
This definitely is not your big brother’s Holyoke, as the longstanding strong program has stumbled this season to a 4-12 record.
Yuma did what is was supposed to do, taking care of business while cruising to a pair of relatively-comfortable wins.
The opener started with a bang. Yahir Trejo reached on an error, and Silas Baucke drove him in with a double. Andre Baucke then launched a two-run homer to left field to score himself and his younger brother. It was Yuma’s first dinger of the year; in fact, it was the first homer by anyone in a Yuma game this season, which has mostly been played in strong, cold winds.
The Indians were not done, though, as Jose Ruiz reached on an error, got to third on another error, then scored on Victor Perez’s sacrifice fly to right, giving them a 4-0 lead.
They added two more in the second when Jonathan Thomson and Angel Escobar both reached base and scored.
Holyoke came back with two in the home half.
However, the Indians answered with a seven-run outburst in the top of the third. Ruiz hit a double during the rally, and Yuma hit six singles, including two by Victor Perez. They tacked on one more in the fifth when Ruiz walked and scored on a passed ball.
The game was called after the fifth inning due to the 10-run rule.
A. Baucke had two hits, including the homer, with four RBI and two runs scored, S. Baucke two hits with a double, three RBI and one run, Escobar two hits and two runs, Perez two hits, two RBI and one run, Ruiz a double, one RBI and two runs, Hugo Montes one hit and one run, Adrian Carranza two runs, and Yahir Trejo, Carson Lynch and Thomson one run each.
S. Baucke went the first three innings on the hill for the pitching win, striking out five, walking three, and yielding two runs, one earned, on two hits. Ruiz went the last two innings, striking out one and yielding two hits.
The Indians won the nightcap in kind of rough fashion, getting a 10-5 decision despite being outhit 9-6, but taking advantage of Holyoke miscues.
Trejo got it going with a one-out double, then scoring on a passed ball. A. Baucke reached on a dropped third strike, and scored on Ruiz’s single to left.
Yuma added three more in the second. Perez reached on a walk and scored on a passed ball. Montes was hit by a pitch and scored on a passed ball. Escobar drew a walk and scored on Trejo’s second double of the game to make it 5-0.
Holyoke made it interesting by scoring three in the home half off of two walks and three hits.
However, Yuma scored the game’s next four runs, including three in the fourth for a 9-3 lead. The Indians scored another in the sixth when Conner Lynch’s single drove in Ruiz for a 10-3 lead.
Holyoke got two runs in its last at-bat, but the game ended on a strikeout.

Trejo did not pitch because of a rib injury, but still hit the two doubles, with one RBI and one run scored. Ruiz had two hits, one RBI and three runs, A. Baucke one hit and one run, Lynch one hit and two RBI, and Escobar, S. Baucke and Montes one run each.
Lynch got the pitching win. He allowed three runs over five innings, scattering six hits while striking out four and walking three. Ruiz went the last two frames, striking out four while allowing two runs on three hits.
“Getting these wins recently have been a real confidence booster for us,” Nighswonger said.
The Indians faced a Brush team Tuesday in its last home game that improved to 15-7 on the season with the win over Yuma, and was No. 7 in the 3A RPI. A win was unlikely, but the main loss might be that of senior Trejo, who collided with Montes on a flyball to shallow left field early in the game.
All three of Yuma’s runs came in the bottom of the fifth. Thomson was hit by a pitch and scored on a fielder’s choice. A. Baucke drove in S. Baucke with a double, and A. Baucke scored on a bases-loaded walk. A. Baucke had two hits, and Ruiz and Perez one each.