No. 9 Bloomfield advanced to the 3A baseball quarterfinals, winning a decisive Game 3 7-6 against No. 8 Portales on Sunday.
“I’m proud of the guys,” said Bloomfield head coach Frank DeHoyos. “They played tough games on the road and managed to come out on top. Not bad for the No. 9 seed.”
The Bobcats split two games with the Rams on Saturday, losing Game 1 11-10, then coming back to win Game 2 7-2, to set up the winner-take-all affair.
With the game tied at six, Austin Lucero came up with the key hit — an RBI single to give Bloomfield a 7-6 lead in the top of the seventh inning.
The Bobcats opened the scoring with two runs in the top of the first inning, but Portales came back with two runs of their own in the bottom of the second to tie the game.
Bloomfield’s Kyle Thompson hit a two-run home run in the top of the fourth to break the tie and give the Bobcats a 4-2 lead.
Thompson had two hits in the victory.
Elisha Journey added to the Bloomfield advantage with a two-run home run in the top of the fifth to stretch the lead to 6-2. Journey went 2-for-4 from the plate in the win.
Portales again answered the Bobcats with four runs in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game before Bloomfield pulled ahead for good in the seventh.
Luke Dugan threw five and one-third innings for Bloomfield, and was relieved by Journey in the sixth inning.
Journey picked up the win for the Bobcats in relief.
Chris Garcia had a pair of hits for Bloomfield, going 2-for-3 in the win.
Bloomfield will face No. 1 Hope Christian at Cleveland High School on Thursday at 1 p.m. in the state quarterfinals.
The Bobcats lost a pair of games with the Huskies earlier in the season and DeHoyos knows his team will need to play better to advance in the tournament.
“We’re going to have to catch the baseball. We had a couple of errors that allowed the game to get away last time,” DeHoyos said. “They’ve got a good team. They’re not No. 1 in 3A for no reason. We’re going to have to play well.”
Joshua Perry can be reached at email@example.com; 505-564-4577. Follow him on Twitter @jperrysuu.