Cats cruise past Coyotes

By Dave Wagner

CNJ sports writer

dwagner@cnjonline.com

It didn’t take Clovis High’s baseball team long to take care of struggling Roswell High on Saturday.

The Wildcats opened the bottom of the first with a single and stolen base by pitcher Matt Lanier, an RBI single and stolen base by shortstop Jordan Holguin and an RBI single and stolen base by left fielder Joseph Ramos. In all, they pushed five runs across the plate in the frame, and Lanier made them stand up with a run-rule-abbreviated three-hitter in a 14-2 win over the winless Coyotes at Bell Park.

CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks Clovis High  junior Derik Kuykendall sends a pop fly to short right field during the first inning of Saturday’s game against Roswell High at Bell Park. Kuykendall later hit a two-run single as the Wildcats beat the Coyotes 14-2.

CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Clovis High junior Derik Kuykendall sends a pop fly to short right field during the first inning of Saturday’s game against Roswell High at Bell Park. Kuykendall later hit a two-run single as the Wildcats beat the Coyotes 14-2.

Clovis (4-4) has posted two of its wins over Roswell High, by a combined 27-3 score.

“I thought we did what we were supposed to do,” CHS coach Shane Leatherwood said. “We came out and hit the baseball.”

The Cats collected 13 hits off four Coyotes hurlers, spread among nine players. Lanier and sophomore second baseman Keaton Greenwalt had two-run doubles while junior designated hitter Derik Kuykendall and senior center fielder Peyton Lott each delivered a two-run single.

“It’s always fun when everybody’s hitting,” said Holguin, who went 2-for-2 with three runs scored and also reached base via a walk and a hit-by pitch. “It was a good team effort today.

“That’s what we need to do every game. Everyone in the lineup needs to hit.”

Seven players scored at least one run and eight drove in at least one.

Meantime, Lanier threw 91 pitchers in a game shortened to 4 1/2 innings by the 10-run rule. He walked four and struck out seven.

The Coyotes (0-9) scored on a double steal in the second, partially botched by the Cats, and on a wild pitch in the third.

Leatherwood said the Cats were able to attack pitches.

CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks Clovis junior Jordan Holguin forces Roswell High’s Bear Kyser at second and throws to first to double up Gus Garcia during the third inning of Saturday’s game at Bell Park. It was one of two  double plays by the Cats in their 14-2 win.

CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks
Clovis junior Jordan Holguin forces Roswell High’s Bear Kyser at second and throws to first to double up Gus Garcia during the third inning of Saturday’s game at Bell Park. It was one of two double plays by the Cats in their 14-2 win.

“We didn’t take pitches that we needed to hit,” he said. “I think today we had the right approach with runners in scoring position.”

The teams were originally slated to play a doubleheader, but played just one after a scheduling mixup. Leatherwood said he had hoped to pitch senior Peyton Lott, who hasn’t thrown this spring due to a shoulder injury, in the second game.

Clovis returns to action at Rio Rancho High in its third weekend tournament of the season, beginning with a 10:45 a.m. game against Sandia.

“It’s a good tournament we’re going to,” Holguin said. “We’ll be facing a lot of good pitchers and good teams.

“It’ll show us where we stand in the state.”