Cavaliers Strike Out the Mavericks

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  • The Cavaliers defeated the nation’s number one ranked team, the Mavericks, 8-3.

  • The Cavaliers defeated the number one team in the nation, the McArthur Mavericks, 8-3.

Phillip Wisser, Alumni

When the Cavaliers baseball team saw their schedule before the season started, February 18 was a game that they had circled.  They knew it was a game to look forward to as it was being played at Marlins Ballpark against national powerhouse Arch Bishop McCarthy.  McCarthy is coming off their fourth consecutive state championship, and is currently ranked number one in the nation by MaxPreps and number two in the nation by Perfect Game.  Having the opportunity to play in a professional stadium is a once in a lifetime experience and opportunity.

“It felt awesome to pitch on the Marlins’ mound. It was a dream come true, honestly. There is nothing I can say. After that first pitch and first inning, I was kind of hyper because it’s a Major League mound, a Major League stadium with all my friends and family watching, but after that all the jitters were gone, I went to do what I had to do,” Cavaliers starter, junior Andrew Cabezas.

The Cavaliers wanted to take this opportunity to prove they could hang with the best in the country and show they too deserved some national recognition.  Coming off with two wins last week in the Rick Gonzalez Cavalier Classic, the players and coaches knew this would be a good test to see where exactly they are.

The Cavs started early by getting a run in the first inning off of a Raymond Gonzalez single.  After stealing second and third base, Rolando Rodriguez came up with a big two out hit bringing in Gonzalez for the first run of the ballgame.  The Mavericks answered with a run of their own in the bottom half of the first to even the score at one with a big two out hit of their own.  Going in to the third inning tied at one, the Cavaliers took the lead and never looked back.  Raymond Gonzalez again got things going with a one out single.  After advancing to second on a wild pitch, Franky Montesino moved Raymond to third with a ground ball to the right side of the infield.  The Mavericks pitcher then threw another wild pitch bringing in Gonzalez to make the score 2-1 in favor of the Cavs.

Gables kept things going as Eli Marrero singled up the middle and stole second on the next pitch to put him in scoring position.  Rolando Rodriguez stepped up big once again as he drove a ball, deep to left centerfield for a triple, bringing in Marrero.  Coco Montes followed with a single of his own to score Rodriguez and give the Cavs a 4-1 advantage over the Mavericks.

On the mound, Andrew Cabezas kept things rolling for the Cavaliers.  He found himself in a few jams but was able to escape them without any damage.  Going to the top of the fifth with the Cavs up 4-1, the team looked to extend their lead.  Once again, it was done by the top of the line-up.  Raymond led things off singling to right centerfield.

“I knew they were throwing hard so I just tried to get my foot down, get my hands out and hit the ball hard,” said junior Raymond Gonzalez. “Coach gives me the green light so I went for a good jump and took off. We really wanted this game, and to know I was helping my guys out by playing good and hard was great.”

Franky Montesino advanced him to second with a sacrifice bunt.  On the very next pitch, Gonzalez picked up his third stolen base of the game and put himself 90 feet away from scoring.  Eli Marrero came through again with a base hit to the left side making the score 5-1.  Rolando Rodriguez drove in Marrero with a double in the gap and Coco Montes scores Rodriguez with a triple to left centerfield increasing the lead to 7-1.  Things were looking great for the Cavs.  Cabezas ran into a little trouble in the bottom half of the inning as they answered with two runs of their own making the score 7-3.  The Cavs did what any good team would do and answered right back in the next inning scoring one more on a Gonzalez single and Marrero sac fly making the score 8-3.

Bryan Melendez came into the game for the Cavaliers to pitch the final two innings.  He kept the Mavericks potent offense off balance and threw a perfect sixth inning.  Going into the bottom of seven up 8-3, Melendez walked the leadoff hitter and then found his groove.  After a fly ball to right field to make it one out, Melendez got the Mavericks fourth batter to hit a ground ball to Coco Montes to create the double play to end the ballgame, giving the Cavaliers the victory 8-3.

“This was a great win for our ballplayers, coaches, and staff.  To beat a quality program, like McCarthy, shows that our hard work is paying off.  We have a great group of kids that work hard, care about one another and only have one goal: winning,” Coach Wisser said.