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Foothill League baseball: Can’t ignore Canyon

After losing to West Ranch on Wednesday, Cowboys bounce back to beat Wildcats to stay in playoff hun

Posted: April 23, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 23, 2011 1:55 a.m.
 

Just winning a couple games isn’t enough for Canyon baseball this year.

It wants to be a legitimate Foothill League contender.

The Cowboys helped their case with a convincing 10-3 win over West Ranch on Friday at Canyon High.

It puts Canyon (9-12, 4-5) just a game behind the Wildcats for third place in the standings thanks to a complete-game pitching performance by J.T. Arguellez and timely contributions from the top of batting order.

“We’ve got to win games on our end, but it’s nice to be in a spot where we can really do something,” said Canyon head coach Adam Schulhofer.

Canyon scored early in the game and continued to manufacture runs as the day went on, capped off by a five-run sixth inning that extended a 5-3 lead to a 10-3 rout.

Arguellez finished with his second complete game of the season, allowing three earned runs off six hits with two strikeouts in the seven-inning outing. His off-speed offerings got West Ranch (11-8-1, 5-4) to hit into several ground-ball outs and infield pop-ups.

“I probably didn’t throw more than 25 fastballs the whole game,” Arguellez said. “I kept throwing change-ups and curveballs, and they never really caught on.”

On the hitting side, the Cowboys got after Wildcats starter Steven Farnworth, scoring leadoff hitter Patrick Roxbury in the first on a ground out and twice more in the second with a two-out rally.

After two straight groundouts to start the second, Farnworth gave up two singles and a walk to load the bases before Cole Mears slapped a two-RBI single into center field to put Canyon up 3-0.

Mears finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs and Roxbury went 3-for-4 with a run scored.

“This is the part of the year, you get to mid-late season, you’ve had your at-bats, and you know what to do up there,” Schulhofer said of the improved hitting.

Farnworth was taken out after three plus innings, where he was credited with four earned runs and five hits.
Many of Canyon’s hits were bloop singles and ground balls through holes in the infield, but alert baserunning and a handful of wild pitches kept the pressure on West Ranch.
“It’s hard to go through that game and find anything they did wrong,” said West Ranch head coach Casey Burrill. “They played really well and they deserved to win this game.”
Wildcats first baseman J.C. Cloney cranked a two-run home run in the fourth inning and teammate Aaron Smirnoff led off the fifth with a double before eventually scoring on a sacrifice fly. Canyon led 5-3 after the fifth.
Other than that, very few Arguellez pitches were hit very squarely.
“That’s the way I do it,” Arguellez said. “That’s the way I’ve always done it, and I’m not going to strike out too many guys. But I’ll take the few I can get.”
The five Canyon runs in the sixth came across on a two-RBI double by Kevin Morrice and an RBI single by Jacob King along with two runs scored on wild pitches.
dagnew@
the-signal.com

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