Mustang baseball finishes 2-3 at Edgewood Tournament

Uriel Arrellano and Joey Blanquiz were named to the All-Star Tournament in Edgewood.

The Natalia Mustang (5-3) baseball team battled through a competitive weekend of action at the Edgewood ISD Tournament. The Stangs finished with a 2-3 record, as they prepare for their final tournament of the season this coming weekend in Pearsall.
“We took 6th place in the tourney and I could not be more proud how our young men battled through adversity,” Natalia Head Coach Kasey Crowther said. “We are literally two plays and one hit away from playing for a tournament title.”
S.A. Edison- Natalia opened the tournament Thursday vs. the Edison Golden Bears. After watching Edison score in their opening at bat, Natalia held the downtown SA squad scoreless until the 4th inning. Edison used two singles and a double to put two additional runs across the plate prior to a huge 5th inning in which they scored three final.
Natalia’s lone run came in the bottom of the 5th, as they used a Diego Zapata base on balls, singles by Uriel Arellano and Jeremiah Gomez along with a double by Fabian Ruiz to score in Zapata.
Natalia actually out-hit Edison 12-9, but missed opportunities proved costly throughout.
At bat: Gavin Martinez 1-3, Diego Zapata 0-2-1run scored, Manuel Garcia 2-3, Uriel Arellano 3-3, Jeremiah Gomez 2-3, Fabian Ruiz 3-3, Jake Navarro 1-3, Joseph Blanquiz 0-2, Chris Saldana 0-2, Roberto Curiel 0-0.
Manuel Garcia has pitched 4.0 innings, allowed seven hits, three runs, struck out four and walked one. Ruiz pitched 1.0, allowed two hits, three runs (2 earned) and walked one.
John F. Kennedy-The Natalia Mustangs responded Thursday evening with a solid win over the Rockets of John F. Kennedy High School. Natalia out-hit Kennedy 13-5 en route to a solid 15-3 run-rule victory.
Natalia out-scored Kennedy 6-3 in their opening at bat, 3-0 in the 2nd inning and 6-0 in the 3rd inning.
At bat: Saul Valadez 2-3-2runs scored, Christian Wootan 0-4, Garcia 2-3-3runs scored, Arellano 1-1-3runs scored, Gomez 3-3-2runs scored, Ruiz 1-1-2runs scored, Navarro 2-2-1run scored, Wyatt Owens 1-1-2runs scored and Esai Alvarado 1-2.
Wootan pitched 3.0, allowed five hits, three runs, struck out four and walked three.
Laredo Martin- The Laredo Martin Tigers made quick work of Natalia Friday as they defeated the Stangs 13-0. Laredo out-hit Natalia 15-3.
Gavin Martinez, Diego Zapata and Uriel Arellano accounted for the lone hits for the Stangs.
Gomez pitched 3.2 for Natalia in the loss.
Robert G. Cole-Natalia picked up their final win of the tournament Friday evening vs. the Cole Cougars. Natalia came alive offensively, out-hitting the Cougars 13-8 en route to a 6-1 victory.
Cole scored in their opening at bat thanks to four singles in a row. This would be the only inning where things worked out for the mean green from Ft. Sam Houston.
Natalia responded in the 1st inning, as they used singles by Martinez, Zapata, Garcia and Arellano to score two runs.
Natalia scored one run in the bottom of the 2nd inning, thanks to an Owens single and a Zapata single.
The final three runs came in the bottom of the 5th. Natalia scored those courtesy of singles by Zapata and Garcia, a hit by a pitch-Ruiz and a big double by Blanquiz fueling the Stangs past their former district foe.
At bat- Martinez 1-3-1run scored, Zapata 3-3-2runs scored, Garcia 2-3-1run scored, Arellano 3-3, Ruiz 1-3, Blanquiz 1-2, Valadez 0-2-1run scored, Austin Guzman 0-3, Owens 2-2-1run scored.
Natalia’s Zapata, Ruiz and Valadez all shared time on the mound during the victory.
Edison-In the final game of the tourney, Natalia battled Edison one final time on Saturday. Natalia gave up a five run opening at bat to the Golden Bears, which proved to be too much to handle.
Natalia rallied back to make it competitive, but fell short 6-3.
Edison out-hit Natalia 11-6 as both teams played errorless defense.
At bat- Martinez 0-1-1run scored, Zapata 1-3-1run scored, Garcia 2-3, Arellano 1-3-1run scored, Valadez 1-2, Ruiz 0-3, Blanquiz 1-3, Guzman 0-3, Navarro 0-2.
Zapata pitched 1.0 innings, allowed six hits, five runs and walked two. Blanquiz pitched 4.0, allowed five hits, one run, struck out three and walked one.
Natalia’s Uriel Arellano and Joey Blanquiz were named to the All-Tournament team in Edgewood.
Upcoming Tournament/Games
Natalia travels to Frio County this weekend for the Pearsall Baseball Tournament. The Stangs will battle 5A Southwest Legacy on Thursday at 4:00 p.m. Natalia returns Friday to battle Pearsall at 10:00 a.m. followed by Crystal City at 12:20 p.m. The final game of the tourney is Saturday as the Stangs battle the Pleasanton Eagles at 12:20 p.m.
On Tuesday, March 17th Natalia will host Carrizo Springs at 7:00 p.m. as non-district play continues.
By Eric Smith
Staff Writer