The good times never stopped for the Canyon del Oro baseball team Wednesday night, rolling past Enid High School, 17-5.
The teams, who were playing in the Lancer Baseball Classic, were neck-and-neck entering the game’s fifth frame, with the Dorados holding on to a 7-5 lead.
The figurative floodgates then opened on an opposite-field triple off the bat of senior Enrique ‘Kiko’ Romero, scoring three runs. That extra base hit was the start of a six-run inning for CDO, giving starting pitcher Dante Schindler more than enough ammunition to earn the victory on the mound.
First-year CDO coach Jason Hisey believes his team, which is full of underclassmen, are clicking in all facets of the game.
The Dorados are 3-0 in the tournament, with wins over Rincon/University (22-1), Sahuarita (6-0) and Enid, improving to 9-2-1 for the season.
“We have a lot of young players,” Hisey said. “We have a lot of sophomores. We have some freshmen that are playing. I think the first couple weeks of the season they were a little uncertain and I think the more that they play, the more they play well, the more they believe they can play well and competence breeds confidence and that's kind of what's happening.”
Romero, who went 3-for-5 in Wednesday night’s victory against the Oklahoma high school, said the team’s win over Enid stemmed from the team’s improved offensive confidence.
“It starts kind of slow,” Romero said. “First time I was batting there it was kind of slow, but second round, second, third, fourth time around we started hitting the crap out of the ball.”
Three Dorados had multi-hit games Wednesday, with freshman Dominic Felix and senior Simon Lytle adding two hits apiece in the win.
Schindler did all that was asked of him, pitching five and two-thirds innings, giving up five runs (three earned) on nine hits, while striking out five.
The tall sophomore right-handed pitcher was able to overcome some early jitters on the mound, thanks to the offensive support that Romero and his teammates provided.
“When our offense started scoring a lot of runs and that helped a lot,” Schindler said. “Knowing that I had run support and I could throw strikes and give up a few hits helped a lot.”
Hisey is confident in his pitching staff, with Schindler slotting in behind seniors Ben Cordova and Nate Martinez, who have gone 6-0 combined this season.
He believes that Schindler, like the other two, has a chance to be special, thanks to his ability to locate all of his pitches, keeping hitters at-bay.
“The good thing about both Dante and Martinez is that they can throw multiple pitches for strikes and so you always know that you're not going to give free bases away throughout the game unless you can't field,” Hisey said. “They're going to make guys swing the bat; we knew that he was going to stay in the game, it was just a matter of us cleaning up the defense.”