The Fowler High School baseball team was looking to win the Santa Fe League championship when it hosted second-ranked Rye Friday at the Grizzlies' field.
The Thunderbolts, however, proved why they are ranked so high as they swept the Grizzlies.
Rye exploded for 10 runs in the seventh to win the first game, which counted in the SFL standings, by a score of 13-3. It then won the second game 18-2.
"They're a good ball club and we talked about that a little bit," said Fowler coach Mark Lowther. "We made some errors and didn't get out of some innings, and a good ball club is going to capitalize on that."
The Thunderbolts drew first blood as Damon Elarton belted a solo home run in the top of the first inning.
The Grizzlies tied the score in their half of the first. Hunter Mason reached on an error and Gabriel Proctor followed with a single. Proctor was forced out at second on Jackson Bates' grounder, but Johnathan Mobbley singled home Mason.
The score remained 1-1 until the top of the fifth when Rye scored two runs.
The Thunderbolts scored 10 runs in the seventh. The highlight was Elarton hitting his second home run of the game — this time a two-run shot.
The Grizzlies managed two runs in the bottom of the seventh. Braxton Bates struck out, but the third strike got past the catcher and Bates made it to first base. Quinton Flanscha then hit a two-run home run.
The Grizzlies managed only five hits and they were led by Mason, who went 2-4 including a double.
Mobbley started on the mound for Fowler and he took the loss. He allowed five runs and seven hits and he struck out four and walked two. Proctor relieved Mobbley in the seventh and he gave up six runs and five hits with no strikeouts and one walk. Rylee Smith finished the game an he surrendered two runs and one hit with no strikeouts and one walk.
The Thunderbolts picked up from where they left off to begin the second game as they scored seven runs in the top of the first.
Rye put five more runs on the board in the third.
The Grizzlies averted the shutout as they scored once in the bottom of the third. Flanscha led off with a double and he came home as Jackson Bates was safe on an error.
The Thunderbolts scored three runs in the fourth and three more runs on the board in the fifth.
Fowler scored one run in the bottom of the fifth. Jackson Bates was safe on an error and he went to third on Mobbley's single. Bates came home on a wild pitch to wrap up the scoring.
The game ended after five innings on the 10-run rule.
The Grizzlies had only three hits with Mobbley going 2-3.
Zane Denton was Fowler's starting pitcher and he was tagged with the loss. He allowed seven runs and five hits and he struck out none, walked two and hit one batter. Flanscha relieved Denton in the first and he gave up five runs and three hits with one strikeout and one walk. Drew Egan went to the hill in the fourth and he surrendered six runs and and three hits and he struck out one, walked four and hit two batters. Proctor finished the game and he allowed no runs and two hits with two strikouts and no walks.
District 6 playoffs started Tuesday
The Class 2A District 6 Tournament began Tuesday with games played in Rye, Holly and Fowler.
The winners of the three brackets advanced to the district Final 4 on Saturday in Rye. The fourth team was determined by ratings percentage index (RPI).
Saturday's first game will begin at 10 a.m.
Rye 13, Fowler 3
Rye 100 020 (10) — 13 13 2
Fowler 100 000 2 — 3 5 7
Elarton (W), Bry. Benz (6, S) and Buford, Bro. Benz (6). Mobbley (L), Proctor (7), Smith (7) and Bitter. HR — R: Elarton 2 (1st inn., none on, 1 out; 7th inn., 1 on, 2 out); F: Flanscha (7 inn., 1 on, 2 out).
Rye 18, Fowler 2
Rye 705 33 — 18 13 2
Fowler 001 01 — 2 3 5
Bro. Benz (W), Buford (5) and Bry. Benz, Buford (4), Bro. Benz (5). Denton (L), Flanscha (1), Egan (4), Proctor (5) and Bitter, Manchego (4).