Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Prosper hammers Argyle
PROSPER — With Austin Aune’s two-run blast down the left field line and over Prosper’s version of Fenway Park’s famous Green Monster on the game’s second at-bat, Argyle started its playoff run on the right foot.
Unfortunately for the Eagles, everything quickly went downhill from there.
Argyle gave up two runs on passed balls and committed five errors en route to suffering a stunning 16-6 blowout at the hands of Prosper on Thursday that ended in five innings and left it trailing by a game in the best-of-three Class 3A area series.
“We came out and laid an egg, unfortunately,” Argyle head coach Ricky Griffin said. “We didn’t play well in a single facet of the game tonight.”
It was a stunning effort by an Argyle (23-9) team that spent most of the season ranked in the top 10 of the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association’s 3A state poll and locked up the District 9-3A championship with relative ease.
Against Proper (22-11), though, the Eagles hardly looked elite.
After jumping out to a 2-0 lead on Aune’s home run, Argyle fell behind after giving up RBI singles to Michael Sefcik and Lance Brooks and allowing another run on an error in the bottom of the first. The Eagles would tie in the top of the second on an RBI single by Layton Lowry and, even after Prosper jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the third, seemed ready to put up a fight.
Then, with two outs in the bottom of the third, Prosper’s Torii Hunter was called out at first on a close call at first to seemingly end the inning. As pitcher, Dalton Pipkin took the field and Argyle headed to the dugout, however, Prosper head coach Rick Carpenter appealed the call at first and, after some deliberation by the umpires, the call was reversed after it was ruled that first baseman Jay Gonzales came off the bag during the play.
Argyle came back out in the inning and, on the first at-bat after the strange reversal, gave up a two-run triple to Prosper’s Dom Hunter and another RBI single to Brandon Grudzielanek before finally getting out of the inning trailing 9-3.
From there, Prosper put it on cruise control.
Prosper scored four more runs in the bottom of the fourth to take a 10-run lead as Argyle went through a slew of pitchers after pulling starter Aune with no outs in the bottom of the fourth. The Eagles would avert being run-ruled momentarily after scoring three runs in the top of the fifth on RBIs by Hayden Muns, Pat Vickery and Lowry but saw their chances at a comeback evaporate in the bottom half of the inning after an error on a hit by Prosper’s Brendan Yarbrough turned a single into a three-run inside-the-park home run.
It was a stunningly out-of-character loss for Argyle, which has had nearly three weeks of downtime after ending its regular season with a loss to Sanger back on April 22. Since then, Argyle has played two warm-up games while Prosper, in addition to warm-up games, stayed fresh with a two-game sweep for Fort Worth Diamond Hill Jarvis in the bi-district round of the playoffs.
“Baseball is a timing sport,” Carpenter said. “The more you play the better you’re going to be. It’s pretty detrimental to have that long of a layover. The way it’s set up, where teams take that long of a break, isn’t a good thing. I wish there was a better way to do it.”
Griffin, meanwhile, wasn’t about to use that as a crutch.
“That’s not an excuse,” he said. “We’ve played two games against two good playoff teams in that time span and played decent baseball against them. We just came out tonight and didn’t play well.”
Now, the Eagles head into today’s Game 2 in Argyle facing elimination against a Prosper team still riding high after a stunningly convincing victory.
“That’s the good thing about two-out-of-three,” Griffin said. “We’re not going to do anything. We’ll show up and if we play well, we’ll have a chance to win. If we play like we did tonight, it’ll be two games and go home.”
MARSHALL MOORE can be reached at 940-566-6869. His e-mail address is email@example.com .
Prosper 16, Argyle 6
WP – Dalton Pipkin. LP – Austin Aune. 2B – A: Pat Vickery. Trent Cantrell. P: Lance Brooks. 3B – P: Dom Garza. HR – A: Austin Aune. Record – Argyle (23-9), Prosper (22-11).