RIO RANCHO — A different team will be hoisting the blue trophy in 4A baseball this season.
No. 6 Farmington dispatched of the defending champion, No. 3 St. Pius X, 5-1 thanks to a dominant performance by Lance Lee on Thursday at Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho.
Lee allowed just five hits and one run in a complete game as the Scorpions advanced to the semifinals of the 4A state baseball tournament.
"That was pretty special," FHS head coach Sean Trotter of Lee's outing. "We hoped going into the year that he was that guy that we could run out against anybody, and he'd give you a chance to win. But he's been plagued by injuries. I'm incredibly proud of his effort today."
Lee was making his first start of the season on the mound after battling an elbow injury all season.
"It feels great to be back on the mound," Lee said. "I felt a little nervous, and, as soon as we got up, I knew I could finish it."
Lee struck out nine Sartans, including three in the seventh to seal the victory.
The FHS bats came through in the bottom of the first with all the run support Lee would need.
Beamer Wick ripped an RBI triple to center field, and then scored following a single by Ethan Spellbring to give FHS a 2-0 lead.
"I feel like that gave us a lot of momentum and got us fired up," Wick said.
The Scorps tacked on two more runs in the fourth inning after an RBI single by Bryce Washburn and a Sartans' throwing error.
Tyler Stock's RBI double in the fifth inning brought Lee around to score and gave FHS a 5-0 lead that it took into the seventh.
Ray Reyes took the loss on the mound for St. Pius after giving up five runs in six innings.
The Scorps will advance to play No. 2 Goddard at 4 p.m. today at Cleveland High School.
The Rockets defeated No. 7 Los Alamos in their quarterfinal matchup to move on in the tournament.
"Goddard could have easily been the No. 1 seed. That's a solid club," Trotter said.