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Tuesday, April 16, 2024 at 9:49 PM
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Ducks edged in district pair

Ducks edged in district pair
Taylor High School varsity baseball senior Dominick Hartman drives a ball into the outfield March 22 during the Ducks’ 6-0 district home win over Manor New Tech High School. Photo by Larry Pelchat

LA GRANGE — The Taylor High School varsity baseball team lost two close 4A-District 22 games as the Ducks traveled to Caldwell High School and La Grange High School.

CALDWELL HORNETS 4, TAYLOR DUCKS 3

In a marathon of a game March 28 against the Hornets, the Ducks were edged 4-3 in a 10-inning contest that had strong pitching from both teams.

Taylor got on the board twice in the top of the first inning as senior Braylan Alderete reached on a dropped third strike and fellow senior Dominick Hartman came home to score, while junior Mario Aguero reached on a fielder’s choice that scored senior Ayden Gutierrez to make it 2-0.

After Caldwell tied it in the bottom of the second frame, Taylor senior Jordan Pickerill scored the go-ahead run in the third inning to give the Ducks a 3-2 advantage.

With the Hornets down 3-2 in the seventh frame, Caldwell tied the game up on an RBI single and the game went to extra innings where the home team eventually won.

Despite the Taylor loss, standout senior Chris Perez was dominant as he struck out 15 batters in 5.2 innings with only two walks issued and both runs he allowed were unearned.

LA GRANGE LEOPARDS 6, TAYLOR DUCKS 4

With Taylor facing a 4-0 deficit April 1 to La Grange in the top of the fifth inning, the Ducks’ offense came to life with all four of its runs for the game. Ducks junior Xavier Juarez scored Taylor’s first run of the game on an error, senior Deacon Stokes had an RBI single, Perez reached via error with Hartman scoring and Alderete hit a sacrifice fly.

However, despite the Taylor rally to tie this game up, the host Leopards immediately answered in the bottom of the fifth frame to make it 6-4 and that score would hold up. The Ducks tried to rally again in the seventh inning but left the tying run at the plate.

In the loss, Alderete came in to pitch 3.1 innings in relief with five strikeouts and just one of the two runs he allowed were earned.

Taylor (9-9-1 overall, 1-3 in district), under Head Coach Kale McQuillen, will look to end a three-game losing streak Saturday, April 6 at 10 a.m. as the Ducks host La Grange for a pivotal rematch.


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