Early deficit too much for Burroughs baseball to overcome versus Arcadia

ARCADIA — Still in the first round of Pacific League play, the Burroughs High baseball team isn't about to panic just yet.

Coming into league competition Tuesday, the Indians were tied for third place in league, just one game behind the Apaches and two behind league-leading Pasadena.

Burroughs was hoping to jump into the thick of title contention with a game against host Arcadia. However, the Indians missed their chance.

Two errors in the first inning allowed the Apaches to score four runs and the Indians were never able to fully battle back, absorbing a 4-2 loss on the road.

With his team sitting at 8-7 and 2-3 in the Pacific League, Burroughs Coach Craig Sherwood said there is still plenty of baseball left to be played this season when it comes to earning a postseason berth.

"There are no panic buttons for us yet," said Sherwood, who is in his first season. "There are four playoff spots at stake in the Pacific League and we are still in the running for one of them. We are right in it, we're not done and we got a lot more games to play yet.

"There are a lot of good teams in the Pacific League and it's nice to see that the league has really been improving."

Burroughs' loss to Arcadia (10-7, 4-1) overshadowed a solid pitching performance from Ben Hobson, who was able to keep the Indians in the game. Despite his defense failing him in the first inning, Hobson went 5 2/3 innings, surrendering two earned runs and eight hits while striking out four and walking two.

"After the first inning, they didn't score again and our pitcher did a good job," Sherwood said. "He stayed right with his game plan and he battled really hard. He just did a great job on the mound and that's what kept us in the game."

Two Burroughs errors and two Apaches hits allowed the hosts to push across four runs in the bottom of the first.

The Indians were kept off the scoreboard until the fourth inning when they embarked on a two-out rally. Noah Hoed started things off with a single to center field before putting himself in scoring position by stealing second. Hoed scored when Kevin Navarro fisted a flair over the first baseman's head into right field. Navarro scored two batters later on a base hit through the left side by Roy Hirota (two for three with a run batted in).

Burroughs put only one runner in scoring position the rest of the way, as Max Haddad led off the sixth inning with a single up the middle and made it to second on an errant pick-off attempt at first. However, he was left stranded following two strikeouts and a flyout to deep right field.

The game featured some controversy in the fifth inning. With one out and runners on first and third, Arcadia's Nick Ibarra lofted a fly to center field. Burroughs' Anthony Bocanegra snagged the ball and fired a laser to the plate. Pinch-runner Christian Alejandres took off from third and barreled his way home. Hirota, the Burroughs catcher, fielded the throw and was flattened by Alejandres. Although Hirota was knocked over and laid out by the violent collision, he held on to the ball for the double play.

Sherwood said he was angered that Alejandres wasn't ejected from the game for what he perceived as an intentional hit on his catcher.

"It wasn't just good enough that he was called out on the play, he should have been tossed as well," Sherwood said. "In high school baseball, college baseball and now professional baseball, it's about avoiding collisions at the plate. The rule says you have to slide to avoid contact. …What he did on that play is unacceptable and for the umpire to allow it is just wrong."

Hirota said he wasn't able to brace for the impact.

"I really couldn't get out of the way," he said. "As soon as I caught it he hit me, so I had no idea it was even coming."


Follow Jeff Tully on Twitter: @jefftsports.

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