FARMINGTON — Naa'taanii ran into trouble against a pesky RC Baker team, but eventually found a way to move on in the Connie Mack City Tournament.
Jared Rodriguez sparked a rally with a lead off double to give Naa'taanii the 2-1 victory over the RiverCats on Thursday at Ricketts Park.
Rodriguez, a 2014 Carlsbad graduate, said it took a few at-bats to get used to RC Baker starting pitcher Wyatt Weaver and his knuckleball, but after seeing the pitch a couple of times, he was able to make the adjustment.
"We just had to listen to our coach, make the adjustment and wait on the pitch," Rodriguez said.
Weaver took a no-hitter into the sixth inning before giving up the double to Rodriguez, who then advanced to third base on a bloop single by Victor Chavez to right field.
Felipe Senora drove Rodriguez in with a ground ball to first base off the end of the bat to tie the game 1-1.
Tyler Williamson came on in relief of Weaver with two out in the sixth and a runner on third. Then his first pitch got by catcher Andrew Caliendo and allowed Chavez to score, giving Naa'taanii a 2-1 lead.
Tyler Archuleta led off with a single to give the RiverCats a chance in the top of the seventh, but Naa'taanii reliever Anthony Acevedo retired the next three hitters to secure the win.
Acevedo threw two and one-third innings of scoreless relief to get the victory for Naa'taanii.
Weaver took the loss for RC Baker after giving up two runs on two hits in five and two-third innings.
The RiverCats opened the scoring in the top of the fifth inning.
Tyler Mead walked with two outs, advanced to second on a throwing error by Sanchez and then scored on an RBI single from T.J. Padilla.
RiverCats coach Thomas Kellenaers said despite getting knocked out of the tournament earlier than they'd like, the team showed a good amount of growth against the strong competition during the summer.
"Our goal as a team and a program at PV is for these guys to get better and compete, and they did that," Kellenaers said. "Obviously, the guys are disappointed because they want to come out and win. There's not a lot of comfort in getting better, but we've talked about it, and if come spring time they're putting another ring on their finger, they can look back and say it's in part due to what we did in the summer time."
In the other elimination game, the Sting came back from a 4-2 deficit to blast the Pack 17-4 at the Farmington Sports Complex.