Navajo dropped a 4-3 decision to Leedey on Tuesday. After trailing early 2-0, Navajo managed a run in the 4th inning on some aggressive David Gilbstad base running and a Leedey throwing error.
Gilstad continued contributing in the 5th inning with a single to right field scoring Collin Becerra. The score remained locked until the top of the 7th inning.
With one out, Prince Silva doubled down the left field line and later advanced to third on another throwing error. When the Leedey catcher tried to throw a stealing Dakota McGrory out at second, Silva scampered across home plate putting the Indians ahead by a run 3-2.
Going into Leedey’s last at bat in the bottom of the 7th, Navajo had the setup they needed to bring the win home. Braden Box faced the 7-8-9 hitters in the lineup. An infield single started the run of tough luck for Navajo. That lead to 3 singles and 2 runs scored.
Box takes another brutal loss going 6 and 1/3 inning and spreading 6 Leedey hits around the diamond.
Winters reflected on the loss adding, “Leedey is very good. Next week when the first set of rankings come out, I suspect Leedey will be ranked 1 or 2. This doesn’t make losing to them hurt any less. We have to learn from this and learn fast. We shouldn’t be pressing too hard and going away from what got us in that position to win late in the game. We have been in this position before. That’s where the frustration comes in. We can’t look around and realize we are about to beat a good team and then tighten up. We have to start closing these games out.”
At this time, it is uncertain where Navajo’s 8-4 record will land them in the rankings. It really is irrelevant. With all 4 losses coming to teams who played in the state tournament in the spring, rankings wouldn’t help the Indians feel any better. This is the difference between competitive teams and elite teams. Elite teams remain loose and are totally confident that they will secure the win in close games. Especially games they are leading late.
Next up for Navajo is a trip to Eakly on Friday to play the winner of Chattanooga and Blair at 6 p.m.
Coach Weston Winters stated, “We have been here before. We have to learn from this.”