|Junior pitcher Austin Zwart nails a go-ahead home run in the sixth inning of Mingus High’s 10–0 win over the Camp Verde Cowboys. VVN/Travis Guy|
|Senior Tyler Herndon (12) high-fives Zwart while the Marauders’ baseball team greets the junior after his game-winning home run. VVN/Travis Guy|
The Mingus Union baseball team has played 12 games this season. Of those 12, four of them were part of the Route 66 Classic, where the Marauders had less than desirable results by going 1-2-1, but in non-tournament contests, the Marauders are a perfect 8-0.
The baseball team improved to 8-0 on Monday, March 18 with a closer than it looks shutout of the Camp Verde Cowboys.
The contest was another pitching duel for the majority of the game, with both pitchers keeping the other team off balance for a majority of the game, but junior Marauder pitcher Austin Zwart edged out senior Zwart pitched the entire game, striking out three Cowboys, pitching 18 outs and only allowing one hit early in the sixth inning.
"It was a well pitched game for six innings," said head coach Bob Young. "Their kid did a really good job of keeping us off balance and our kid, he pitched a no-hitter, so he was in control the whole game. I thought it was a well pitched game, good defense and then in the sixth inning, we finally started getting our timing down and we were able to start hitting ball a little bit."
Not only was Zwart a main component on the defense for Mingus, he also spurred the offense when the first two innings of the game went scoreless.
"Their kid did a real good job throwing curve balls for strikes, but you just have to let the ball get deep and have to get your timing down," Young said. "Good hitters have to make adjustments and we were not doing a very good for five innings of adjusting and waiting for the ball to get deep on us and drive it. Finally in the sixth inning we had some success."
The junior pitcher singled to left field, driving in two runs. Zwart's bat would say quiet until a Camp Verde pitching change in the sixth inning. After the change, Zwart sent a pitch over the fence, earning the Marauders two runs and sealing the game with a 10-0 win.
"I thought our defense was outstanding, which got me through pitching-wise," Zwart said. "Our hitting could have come through a little better in the beginning, but it came through late in the game, which helped us out."
Zwart ended the game going 4-for-4 with two hits, four RBI's, one run and a home run. Senior Tyler Herndon and junior Easton Bright both went 3-for-3 with two hits, but Herndon had one more run than Bright as well as a triple, and Bright hit one more RBI than his senior teammate.
"I though Easton Bright at third base, he had two at bats for us, he was one of the guys that got two big hits for us," Young said. "He got one in the sixth inning, he had two strikes and I think he fought off three or four pitches and then hit a nice little line drive into right field, so he had a good game. Tom McCarty, our short stop, defensively he had a very good game."