There is still plenty of baseball left to be played, but the Yuma High School squad needs to find a winning formula soon.
The Indians fell to 0-5 overall, 0-4 in the Lower Platte Activities Association this past Tuesday in a bitterly cold and windy doubleheader against Merino, following a series of close losses to start the season. They are home again Saturday when they host Haxtun, ranked No. 8 in Class 1A, for another league double dip.
Merino, ranked No. 2 in Class 1A, is now 7-1 in league play, while Haxtun was 3-1, Wiggins 3-2, and Wray, Caliche and Akron each 2-2. Yuma, Holyoke and Sedgwick County were winless in LPAA games. Several league games were scheduled this week, but it was not known if they could occur due to the high winds forecasted for the region earlier this week. There should be no issue with games Friday and Saturday.
Yuma traveled to Sterling last Friday for a rescheduled non-league game. The Indians gave a good battle, but eventually lost 8-3 to the Tigers, who are ranked No. 5 in Class 3A.
They trailed 1-0 when they plated three runs in the top of the third. John Smith and Yahir Trejo both reached on an error and scored on an error. Andre Baucke reached base and scored on Jose Ruiz’s single to left.
That was all the runs Yuma could get, however, as Sterling methodically moved ahead. The Tigers tied the score in the home half of the third, then pushed across four runs in the fifth on only hit, a double, and aided by four walks. The Tigers added one more run in the sixth for the 8-3 win.
Yuma had baserunners over the final four innings, but could not capitalize.
Ruiz had two of Yuma’s three hits, with one RBI, and Silas Baucke had the other hit.
Conner Lynch went 4-1/3 innings on the hill. He yielded five runs on three hits and seven walks, striking out four. Ruiz went 1-2/3 innings, allowing three runs on two hits and three walks.
Yuma finally showed more offense Saturday in a single league game against Caliche in the Indians’ home opener. However, they could not string enough together at the right time, eventually losing 8-5 in nine innings.
Plus, they dug themselves a hole right off the bat with sloppy play in the first inning.
Two walks and two errors led to Caliche opening the game with four runs on just one single. Three singles and an error led to another Buffaloes run in the top of the second for a 5-0 lead.
However, the Indians then began battling back.
Angel Escobar reached on an infield single, and Trejo on an error in the bottom of the third. They both scored on S. Baucke’s single. Yuma pushed across two more in the fourth when Escobar doubled, and Kobe Rayl reached on a walk. Trejo and A. Baucke hit back-to-back singles to score Escobar and Rayl, cutting the deficit to one, 5-4.
Yuma’s defense and pitching settled in after the second inning, allowing for the comeback. After leaving S. Baucke stranded on third in the fifth, and Rayl stranded on third in the sixth, the Indians finally broke through with the tying run in the bottom of the seventh.
Victor Perez hit a one-out triple, then scored on Hugo Montes’ double. Smith followed with a single, but the Indians could not get the walkoff win as a double-play liner back to the pitcher ended the threat, sending the game into extra innings.
The Indians again had a chance a the walkoff in the eighth when A. Baucke hit a two-out double, and courtesy runner Adrian Carranza advanced to third on a wild pitch. The threat ended with a strikeout, though, sending the game into the ninth.
Caliche finally broke through in the ninth after being held scoreless for six innings. The Buffaloes pushed across three on two hits and three walks for an 8-5 lead. The Indians could not answer, going down in order in the home half.
Yuma had 14 hits to just eight for Caliche, and struck out just five times compared to 17 for the Buffaloes. However, Yuma drew just one walk, while Caliche was issued eight walks, then got the timely hits.
Perez had two hits, including triple, and one run, A. Baucke two hits, including a double, and one RBI, Escobar two hits, including a double, and two runs, S. Baucke two hits and one RBI, Smith two hits, Montes one double and one RBI, Rayl one hit and one run, Trejo one hit, one RBI and one run, and Ruiz one hit.
Trejo was tough on the hill after a rough first inning. He went four innings, allowing five hits, five unearned runs, seven strikeouts and two walks. S. Baucke had a strong five-inning outing before finally tiring in the ninth, striking out 10 and walking six, while allowing just two hits, and three earned runs.
Then came Tuesday’s double dip with Merino, losing 11-1 and 18-10. The twin bill lasted more than four hours in cold temperatures and a constantly-buffeting wind from the north.
Yuma kept it close in the opener, trailing just 2-1 after four innings. Hugo Montes scored Yuma’s lone run in the third. However, Merino broke it open in the top of the fifth with nine runs off four hits, and some walks and errors. Yuma could not answer in the home half, and the game was called on the 10-run rule.
Yuma did not have a single hit, and struck out nine times. Trejo kept the Rams in check through four innings before their outburst in the fifth. He allowed four earned runs on nine this and three walks, striking out four.
The nightcap turned into a marathon as the players battled through the conditions.
Merino built a 10-1 lead, but the Indians then made it interesting in the bottom of the fourth. They plated six runs during the at-bat off of three hits and three walks. The rally included a single by Perez that was misplayed, making it to the fence as the loaded bases cleared and Perez also scored.
It was as close as the Indians could get, though, as they eventually lost by eight. Yuma did not help its cause with nine errors.
Ruiz had three hits and two RBI, Trejo two hits, one RBI and three runs, S. Baucke two hits and one run, Perez two hits, two RBI and one run, A. Baucke a double, one RBI and one run, Rayl one hit and two runs, and Jake Hagemeier and Bridger Lynch one run each. C. Lynch took the pitching loss, and Ruiz and Montes also spent time on the hill.
The Yuma High School JV baseball team opened its season last week with three games.
The Indians’ first game was a 2-2 tie in three innings at Akron. Jake Hagemeier had two hits and one RBI, Carson Lynch a one-run double, Jonathan Thomson one hit, and Bridger Lynch one hit and one run.
Yuma put up a great rally in an 8-7 loss at Sterling, last Friday, trailing 6-1 after two innings. Thomson had two hits and two runs, Adrian Carranza one hit, Hagemeier one run, B. Lynch one run, C. Lynch one hit, one RBI and two runs, Noah Hansen one hit and one run, and Carlos Wario one hit and two RBI.
The Indians rallied from an early deficit against Caliche, last Saturday at home, to pull out a 12-11 win. Thomson had three hits, including a double, with three RBI and two runs, B. Lynch two hits, including a double, with three RBI and two runs, Braden Brunk two hits, one RBI and one run, C. Lynch a one-run double, Hagemeier one hit and three runs, and Carranza three runs.