N.M. baseball playoffs: Miyamura earns second seed
With an outright district championship, the Miyamura baseball team enters the 4A state playoffs as the No. 2 seed.
The Patriots went 16-4 overall during this truncated season, including a 10-0 mark in District 1-4A play under head coach Dustin Vidal.
“It’s nice to have gone undefeated in our district,” Vidal said. “I was informed that this is the first time we’ve won it outright.”
A couple of seasons ago, Vidal said the Patriots did earn a tie for first-place in the district race, but they lost the crown based on run differentials.
Not this season though, as the Patriots came up with seven shutouts during league play. With that the state seeding committee granted Miyamura its highest playoff seed in the program’s history.
“This season was definitely a challenge, and nothing was easy for us,” Vidal said. “We did very well in district. We were able to shutout teams but a lot of that is due to good pitching. We do have some depth with pitching but we’re also playing good defense as well.”
The Patriots will host No. 7 seed Roswell Goddard at 10 a.m. at Miyamura High School on Tuesday.
District foe Aztec also made the playoffs as an at-large team, earning the No. 8 seed. The Tigers will tangle with top seed St. Pius X on Tuesday at noon.
In other playoff matchups, the Rehoboth Lynx and the Navajo Prep Eagles are scheduled to play on Tuesday as well.
Navajo Prep, the No. 7 seed in the 3A bracket, takes on East Mountain at 3 p.m. while 2A Rehoboth is pitted against McCurdy in the 4-5 matchup. First pitch for the latter game starts at 2 p.m.
Second round action for the 2A and 3A brackets will take place on Wednesday while the 4A and 5A teams will play their semifinals on Thursday with the higher seeded teams hosting.
As one of the higher seeded teams, Miyamura is hoping to be playing on Thursday.
“We’re playing very good, but I don’t know if we’ve peaked just yet,” Vidal said when asked about the team’s outlook going into the playoffs. “We’ve seen some improvements and we’ve been consistent all year.”
Nonetheless, he said they’ve been up-and-down in the hitting department.
“We’ve had our struggles, but we’ve still managed to get runs in,” he said. “It’s nice that we’ve been able to do that but it hasn’t come easy.”
Pitching, Vidal said, will be the deciding factor on whether his team advances into Saturday’s championship game. The bullpen includes senior ace Mark Rios, senior Justin Meese and sophomore Jaimeer Beyale.
“He’s been very dominant on the mound for us this year,” Vidal said of Rios. “We’ve asked him to step up in a lot of different situations and he’s done that.”
As for Beyale, the Miyamura coach said his pupil could work through just about any situations.
“He can work the counts well,” he said Beyale. “He has a lot confidence and poise on the mound.”
Vidal said Meese is another stellar pitcher.
“He’s been throwing strikes and that is what we want him to continue to do,” he said. “Justin has done a great job this year.”
In addition to those three, Vidal said he has other guys that can pitch.