WOODROW-Bad defense can hurt you, but good defense can bail you out.
Friday evening the Borger Bulldogs learned both lessons in game one of their 3A Area Round playoff series with the Pecos Eagles at Lubbock Cooper High School.
Through seven innings the Bulldogs committed five errors on the field yet were able to pull two key double plays, along with senior catcher Brandon Garcia throwing out two base runners, as Borger was able to hang on for a 5-4 win.
Pecos threatened to get on the scoreboard first in the top of the second inning, by putting runners on second and third base with only one out. However a ground out to third and a ground out to the pitcher kept the Eagles from bringing in a run.
In the bottom half of the inning, a double by senior Zach McDonald started a good at bat for the Bulldogs with senior Acton Smith bringing in McDonald for a run, followed by a double by junior Chayse Tracy put Smith on third base. Smith then scored on a passed ball at home plate to give Borger a 2-0 lead.
In the top of the third inning, Borger committed two errors setting up Jesus Salgado to put Pecos on the scoreboard, on a RBI single, to make it a 2-1 game.
The score stayed 2-1 until the top of the fifth inning when Edmundo Dominguez hit a RBI double to tie the game a 2-2. The Eagles followed by capitalizing on a Bulldog error that brought in a run to give Pecos a 2-3 lead.
Pecos potentially had a chance for a big fifth inning but the Bulldogs were able to get off the field on a 4-6-3 double play to keep the deficit at one run.
Borger finally took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth inning with Smith collecting his second RBI on a single followed by RBI hits by sophomore Garth Payton and Max Lusk to make it a 5-3 game.
The top of the seventh started bad for Borger, as Pecos used a hit batter, a bach and an error to score a run to make it a 5-4 game.
But give the Bulldogs credit for regrouping by ending the game on a fielder’s choice and with another 4-6-3 double play to hang on for the one run win.
The best of three series continues on Saturday starting at 1:00 p.m. at Lubbock Cooper High School in Woodrow.
Senior Hunter Hertel pitched all seven innings for the Bulldogs giving up three runs on eight hits. Salgado got the loss on the mound for Pecos where struck out five while giving up five runs on nine hits.
At the plate: Garrett Irwin-2/3; Hertel 2/3; Smith ½ 2 RBI’s; McDonald ½ double; Tracy 1/3 double.
Pecos 001 020 1-7 8 2
Borger 020 003 x-5 9 5