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Vaqueros have 2 of 3 in Grand Canyon Tournament so far

Clayton Keyes looks at one. Homers, triples and adds a few doubles in first three tournament games.
Clayton Keyes looks at one. Homers, triples and adds a few doubles in first three tournament games.

Central Arizona baseball won two of three games Friday and Saturday at Grand Canyon University in a tournament hosted by the Vaqueros. Current assistant coach Joe Perez was the Director of Operations there and spent four years running the show, so it must have been pretty nice to return to the facilities with his Vaqueros baseball team for the weekend.

For the first few minutes.

You forget about all that stuff a few minutes before gametime...because it's GAMETIME. The final game is today against Yavapai College again, and there's a score to settle.

In another battle with the College of Southern Nevada on Friday night, Central reliever Dakota Donovan had five innings for the ages. In a relief appearance after starter Jonathan Stroman and Zane Strand threw very well, he retired all 15 batters he faced in the Vaqueros 5-4 win in 14 innings. Donovan struck out eight of the fifteen on top of that.

"The guy had maybe 40 pitches after four innings" head coach Anthony Gilich said afterwards. The Central staff struck out 20 CSB hitters.

With two outs, first baseman Jacob McKeon hit a hard single into center field with Clayton Keyes on second and Central won the game in 14 innings. Keyes has had a weekend at the plate so far going 7-14 with two doubles, a triple and a homerun.

In game two on Saturday, Lucas Knowles threw six innings, gave up two hits and struck out nine in a 10-0 win against Trinidad State. Mitchell DeCovich got Trinidad 1-2-3 in the seventh for a run-rule win. Keyes and catcher Brady Welch hit homeruns along with Josh Dudden and Ian Raidy doubles.

Different story against Yavapai College in game three. With Central leading 2-1 after five behind Leo Palacios, Yavapai put together a few hits to score four runs and the Vaquero bats kind of stopped and the Roughriders won 7-2.

After today's tournament final, it's a home-away two game series this upcoming weekend against Gateway Community College for Central Arizona's Big House opener.

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