Buffs turn back Grady in District 3-1A opener

Apr. 16—GRADY — Junior Cy Draper hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning and Melrose handed Grady its first loss of the season on Monday, a 6-3 decision in the District 3-1A opener for both teams.

Draper's home gave the Buffaloes (5-3) a 6-1 cushion, and they withstood a rally by Grady in the bottom half. The Bronchos (7-1) came into the game ranked No. 1 in Class 1A after their fast start.

Senior Michael Cardonita went 3-for-3 with a pair of doubles and two runs scored for Melrose. Draper drove in a fourth run with a successful squeeze bunt, while junior Deakin Ragland led Grady at the plate with a triple and an RBI.

Cardonita allowed three hits in 5 1/3 innings for the win, striking out eight, while senior Dathan Yeary got the final five outs to earn a save.

Senior Zane Bush pitched the first six innings for Grady, allowing just two hits and striking out 10.

In other Monday baseball:

Gateway Christian 14, Elida 0 — In a 4-1A matchup at Roswell, the homestanding Warriors took control with a seven-run second. The game ended after 4 1/2 frames on the 10-run rule.

Junior Ethan Wigley went 4-for-4, scoring twice and driving in four, while sophomores Sam Waide and Jacoby Chavez and freshman Grady Munson all had two hits. Chavez and Munson each doubled while Munson and Waide both drove in a pair of runs.

Wigley and junior Rayford Fulkerson combined to limit the Tigers (3-3, 2-1) to a single apiece for senior Mikael Malloy, junior Hardy Fraze and freshman Coda Cathey.

In Saturday baseball:

Santa Rosa 13, Melrose 3 — At Santa Rosa, the Lions, ranked No. 1 in Class 2A, extended their winning streak to 14 games since a season-opening loss to El Paso Di Vinci with a 13-3 victory over Melrose on Saturday.

Junior Daniel Zamora and sophomore David Chavez went 2-for-3 while sophomore Joshua Cordova homered and drove in three runs for the Lions, who scored four times in the bottom of the fifth to end it on the 10-run rule. Sophomore Maddux Lucero tossed a complete game for Santa Rosa, allowing five hits.

Junior Cy Draper went 2-for-2 with a walk, a run scored and an RBI for the Buffaloes (4-3), who did all their scoring in the fourth inning. Senior Gray Brandon added a single and an RBI for the Buffs.

In Friday action:

Elida 8-12, Dora 2-9 — At Dora, the Tigers posted a sweep in the opening District 2-1A twin bill for both squads.

In the opener, Elida (3-2 overall) pulled away with a three-run sixth. Senior Seth Jimenez went 2-for-2 with a double, two runs and two RBIs for the Tigers while freshman Bradley Burris was 2-for-3, knocking in two and scoring once.

For the Coyotes (0-4), freshman Rylan Harris finished 2-for-3 while junior Aaron Combs was 1-for-2 with an RBI and a run scored.

The teams were tied 2-2 after an inning in Game 2. Dora then erased a four-run deficit with a seven-run sixth, only to see the Tigers rally for six in the top of seven.

Dora outhit Elida 10-9, and the teams combined for 25 walks. Junior Hardy Fraze went 2-for-2 with a double, a triple and three runs scored, Jimenez was 1-for-5 but drove in three runs and sophomore Radley Ferguson went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored.

Juniors Ashton Davis and Roddy Neal led the way for the Coyotes, each going 3-for-4, while eighth-grader Isaac Jasso doubled twice in three at-bats and knocked in three teammates and freshman Timmy Neal added a double and two RBIs.

Texico 16, Clayton 1 — At Clayton, the Wolverines ran away from the Yellowjackets in Texico's District 6-2A opener as senior Kyle Gonser went 4-for-5 with two doubles, four RBIs and two runs scored. The game ended in five innings on the 10-run rule.

Seniors Daltyn Cain, Easton Cooper and Erik Davalos and sophomores Hunter Bowman and Cesar Chavez all had a pair of knocks for Texico, including a double by Davalos and triples by Cain, Cooper and Chavez. They combined to score 10 runs and drive in seven.

Cooper went the five-inning distance on a three-hitter, striking out eight and allowing just three hits to the Yellowjackets (4-7, 0-3 district).

Gateway Christian 11-26, Floyd 0-0 — In another opening 1-2A twin bill at Roswell, Gateway (6-5) used two big innings — a five-run first and a four-run fifth — to take control in Game 1.

Freshman Grady Munson and eighth-grader Cohen Bolin combined on a two-hitter for the Warriors, allowing singles to Broncos eighth-graders Rey Duarte and Brayden Parks. Gateway junior R. Fulkerson had a double and two triples in three at-bats, scoring three times and driving in three.

Gateway scored 18 runs in the first and six in the fourth in the nightcap. Fulkerson went 3-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs for the Warriors, while Parks and junior Jimmy Lovato each had a single for Elida.

In area prep softball:

Loving 25, Dora 7 (Tuesday) — In District 4-1/2A, the visiting Lady Coyotes led 4-0 in the top of the first and 5-3 before the two-time defending 1-2A state champion Lady Falcons scored 22 times in the bottom of the second. The game ended after 2 1/2 innings on the 15-run rule.

Senior Bre'Ann Rodriguez and junior Justice Deason were each 2-for-2 with a run scored for Dora while senior Faith Jasso was 1-for-2 with a double, a run scored and an RBI.

Eunice 14-26, Dora 1-7 (Saturday) — The Lady Cardinals posted a pair of five-inning district wins at Dora. In the opener, junior McKayla Pierce went 4-for-5, scoring four times and delivering an inside-the-park home run, while senior Kelli Stinson finished 3-for-4 and tallied three times.

Jasso and freshman Karen Inge were both 2-for-3 while freshman Kinsley Inge, Karen's twin, had a hit and scored the Lady Coyotes' lone run.

In Game 2, Eunice (9-7, 3-2) broke the game open with 16 runs over the final two frames. Kinsley Inge went 3-for-3 and scored a run while sophomore Dakota Jones went 2-for-3 with two runs scored.

Deason and Karen Inge, meantime, each had a triple, and Deason scored a pair of runs.