Vandals fall to Benson in 2A semifinal

Courtesy photo Miami’s Aidan Guthrey went 2-for-3 with one RBI in the Vandals’ semifinal loss to Benson.

Friday afternoon at Diablo Stadium in Tempe, the Miami High School and Benson High School baseball teams met again in the AIA Conference 2A tournament semifinals. In a rematch of last season’s semifinal game, which Benson won via forfeit, the Vandals’ championship drive ended in an 11-3 Bobcats win. Benson built a 9-0 lead after two innings; a lead Miami was unable to overcome, though they outscored the Bobcats 3-2 in the last five innings. Juniors Angel Perkins, Angel Pena and Izak Villalobos provided the scoring for the Vandals, with a run apiece. Miami’s leading scorer with 64 runs on the season, senior Gabe Escobedo, was held without a run but batted in two.

In the 1A semifinals, also held Friday at Diablo Stadium, the Hayden High School Lobos took the top-seeded Mogollon High School Mustangs, of Heber, the distance before falling 2-1. After four scoreless innings, Hayden junior Alejando Lorona and Mogollon senior Cael Porter each scored in the fifth for a 1-1 game.  Porter then gave the Mustangs the win with a run in the bottom of the seventh. Mustangs senior pitcher Malaki Porter struck out 10 Hayden batters. Mogollon went on to take the 1A championship Saturday, defeating the Bagdad Sultans 8-2. Cael and Malaki Porter both had three runs, with sophomore Adrian Suarez adding the other two.

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