Pirates stay perfect in 7-4A play


Landon Gray continued his torrid streak at the plate, and the Granbury Pirates remained perfect in District 7-4A with a 9-1 home baseball win over Southwest Tuesday.

Gray went 3-for-4 and drove in a run. That makes him 12-for-16 over the past five games.

Gray was named the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association Hitter of the Week for March 10-16.

But Gray is only one of eight Pirates who had a good day at the plate as the team improved to 4-0 in district (10-6 overall).

Josh Yarbrough had two hits and a walk. Payton Rhodes had two hits, a walk and RBI. Nathan Hickey tripled and walked.

And Tristan Fallin hit a grand slam home run, putting the Pirates ahead 4-0 after the first inning.

The Pirates were never threatened as Rhodes and Landon Weatherly combined to pitch a three-hitter. Southwest’s lone run was unearned.

The duo did, however, surrender six walks opposite five strikeouts.

“The two of them did what we ask, and that is to give us a chance to make plays behind them,” said Granbury coach Brad Eppler.

“Still too many walks, but now that we are out of the tournament grind we can get back to working on things in the pen to help us with consistent release points on all pitches.”

Granbury hitters drew four walks of their own. They also had two batters get hit by a pitch.

One of those hit by a pitch was Daniel Arnett, who was making his season debut. He went 1-for-3 with a double.

Arnett batted .426 last season with four home runs and 18 runs batted in. He was also named first-team shortstop.

He had not played previously this season for disciplinary reasons.

The victory kept the Pirates in step with District 7-4A co-leader Arlington Heights (8-6, 4-0) with Aledo (15-2, 3-1, No. 8 in the state) right behind.

Aledo’s lone loss was 2-1 to Arlington Heights in Fort Worth on March 4.

Granbury plays at Aledo Tuesday and hosts Arlington Heights Friday.

For the season, Gray is batting .529. He has reached 43 times in 66 plate appearances, including 27 hits, 10 walks, three times hit by a pitch, and three times on error.

His .625 on-base percentage leads the team, as does his .784 slugging percentage.

Gray is one of six Pirates who are batting over .300 this season. Nathan Hickey is batting a team-best .565, Weatherly is hitting .393, Rhodes is batting .351, and Fallin is hitting .339.

As a team, the Pirates are batting .341 with a .422 on-base percentage.

Pitching-wise they are solid as well, with a 2.24 earned-run average.

In four district games they have outscored their opponents 52-5. This includes a 30-4 win over O.D. Wyatt.

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Southwest 000 100 0 – 1 3 2

Granbury 402 120 x – 9 12 0

Granbury pitching – Payton Rhodes 3.2 innings, 2 hits, 1 run (0 earned), 3 walks, 2 strikeouts; Landon Weatherly 3.1 innings, 1 hit, 0 runs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts.

Granbury hitting – Landon Gray 3-4, RBI; Josh Yarbrough 2-2, walk; Rhodes 2-3, walk, RBI; Daniel Arnett 1-3, double, hit by pitch; Matthew Hickey 1-2, double, hit by pitch; Weatherly 1-3, walk, RBI; Nathan Hickey 1-3, walk, triple; Tristan Fallin 1-4, home run, 4 RBIs.

Granbury record – 10-6, 4-0 in 7-4A.