By Vern Hee
The Trojans baseball team has already surpassed the number of wins it got last year in the first few weeks of the new season. They had one win last year and this year they are 5-5 after two tournaments and a win against Desert Pines.
The Trojans went to the Mountain View Tournament for two days of baseball last Wednesday and Thursday, where they played four teams in 48 hours.
In this trip, the team increased the team batting average to .319. Last year the team was hitting at around .220 for the year.
In the four games, the team made only three errors. The team had to bring the errors down said Coach Brian Hayes in order for the wins to come. The team recorded 21 errors in the first six games of the season. This is a dramatic turnaround for the team.
“The Mountain View tournament was a good confidence builder,” said Hayes. “Although we didn’t play great teams, we played good, solid baseball over the weekend. The team from Liberty was a quality team, and although we lost 3-9 we played good baseball.”
Since the last tournament, Hayes said he wanted to focus on the fundamentals and playing solid ball.
Hayes wrote in an email response to questions that he wanted his team to focus on five areas, including throwing strikes, defensive plays, controlling the run game, winning the freebie battle — freebies are walks, stolen bases, wild pitches, etc. — and finally improving at-bats.
After losing to Liberty, the team beat Meadows, 7-1, Virgin Valley, 11-0 and Laughlin 7-3. The team scored 28 points in the last four games, gaining 46 runs on the season.
The pitching has really improved for the Trojans. In the pitching department, Chad Uyeno continues to lower his earned run average, which went from 2 to 1.4 in his victory against Meadows. In this game, he allowed just five hits in seven innings and one run. He had 10 strikeouts on the game.
Brian England saw action at Virgin Valley. His ERA dropped from a 7.0 to 4.45. During his outing he pitched four innings and had no walks and no runs. Virgin Valley got one hit from him.
Finally the pitcher for the Laughlin game was AJ Segura. His ERA is 5.58. He pitched for five innings, allowed three runs, seven hits, had four strikeouts and three walks.
For the Trojans pitching staff, it has been a great confidence builder. The tournament did what Hayes intended it to do.
The team travels to the Durango Tournament for some sharpening of skills next Monday. This tournament has tougher teams and will get the Trojans ready for the IA season. Already the Trojans have beaten two teams in the IA, Desert Pines and Virgin Valley.
Another positive, power hitter, Aukai Alameda, returned to the lineup. He plays third base. He hit .357 for the tournament, and had four hits and four RBIs.
To continue with the progress, the Trojans need a good week off.
“We need to have a solid week of practice to get us ready for the Durango Tournament next week. We are a little worried about the effort and focus level of the kids this week, especially considering that we don’t have any games this week. We will find out a lot about the commitment level of our baseball team this week,” concluded Hayes.
Chad Uyeno 7 IP, 5 hits, 0 runs, 0BB, 10K
Brian England 4 IP, 1 hit, 0 runs, 5 K
AJ Segura 5 1/3 IP, 7 hits, 3 runs, 3BB, 4K,
AJ Segura- 7-12, 4 runs, 2 2B, 8 RBI
Josh Mortensen- 5-8 5 runs, 2 RBI,
Aukai Alameda- 4-13 2B 4 RBI