Mesa, AZ - The #8 Mesa Thunderbirds used a walk-off, bases loaded suicide squeeze in the bottom of the tenth inning Saturday afternoon to defeat the Yavapai College Roughriders, 11-10. The T-Birds split the double-header with the Roughriders, with Yavapai handily taking game one, 12-1 in six innings.
It was Greg Student who laid down a perfect bunt down the third base line against a Yavapai defense that was playing back that allowed pinch-runner Corey Chaplin to score from third to complete the come-from-behind win.
The T-Birds were staring down a 9-3 deficit in the bottom of the eighth inning but six hits and five runs later, Mesa cut the Roughrider lead to just one. In the eighth inning, Joshua Brown starting the scoring with a no-doubt homer ro right field. Two straight singles by Riley Peterson and Greg Student then led to a Drew Bailey double to center field, scoring Peterson.
Kelby Richardson then grounded out to the shortstop to score Student from third to make it a 9-6 game. Connor Denning then doubled down the right field line to score Bailey from second to make it a 9-7 game. A Paul Steffensen single then scored Denning to finish the scoring in the eighth inning for the T-Birds.
Though Yavapai scored in their half of the tenth inning to make it 10-9, Paul Steffensen singled to right field to get Mesa on the basepaths in the bottom half of the inning. After two wild-pitch's helped Pauly move over to third, Marcus Skundrich hit into a fielder's choice that score Steffensen from third to tie it at 10.
Joshua Brown and Dylan Norsen each singled to load the bases and on the second pitch of Student's at bat, he executed the bunt down the third base line and with no play at the plate, Corey Chaplin scored with ease.
With the split, Mesa moves to 34-10 overall on the season and 18-10 in the ACCAC. The T-Birds will play at South Mountain on Tuesday afternoon at 3 pm then back at home on Wednesday against South Mountain, beginning at 3 pm.