LLHS baseball wins debut of interim coach Harmon

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Under its third coach in four games, Los Lunas showed that there is still plenty of good Tiger baseball left in the season's tank.

The Tigers responded to Daniel Harmon's direction to take a 14-4 win on their home field Tuesday against Grants to improve to 15-8 for the year and 4-3 in District 6-4A.

Los Lunas finishes the season with three home games and hopes of getting a favorable berth in to the state tournament. They face Gallup at 11 a.m. on Saturday with Miyamura coming to town on Tuesday at around 6 p.m. Los Lunas concludes the regular season by hosting Valencia at 1 p.m., Saturday, April 28.

The April 18 loss at Valencia was the final game under coach Robert Riggins, a tough, well-played contest that the Jags took 1-0. Then came the two-game coaching stint of Pete Candelaria, which ended with his resignation following an 11-9 loss to rival Belen.

Through it all, Daniel Harmon encouraged the Tiger team as an assistant coach. According to Los Lunas Schools athletics director Wilson Holland, Harmon has been named the Tigers' interim coach.

It appeared that Harmon's fist game might be a little tough as Grants led off with four runs in the top of the first.

But the win was secured in the bottom of the inning, starting with Isaac Parra's two-out solo home run over the right-center field fence.

"It was really good," said an excited coach Harmon. "It got a good rally going that really lifted the team. And it all came with two outs."

Cody Reynolds kept the inning going with a hard smash to third, which he beat out at first. Mario Legarda's double scored Reynolds.

Greg Wortman and Donald Cruz were hit by pitches around a Preston Schollander walk. Legarda scored when Cruz was hit by the Pirate hurler Jerome Abeita.

Pitcher Ruger Rodriguez helped his own effort on the mound by giving the Tigers the lead for good with a single that scored Wortman and Schollander.

Rodriguez (3-3) settled in to a good rhythm on the hill, holding Grants scoreless through the next four innings of work.

After adding a run in the bottom of the second, Los Lunas broke the game open with a four-run third to lead 10-4.

It was the Reynolds-Legarda combination that did the third-inning damage for Los Lunas. Reynolds hit a double to deep center field that scored Rodriguez and John Rivera, after the Tiger leadoff hitter drove in Cruz for the first run of the inning. Legarda then hit a single up the middle to score Reynolds.

Los Lunas completed the run-rule win with a four-run fifth inning.


-- Email the author at mstearns@news-bulletin.com.