TEMPLE — Over its last five games, Temple had allowed an average of three runs, a sign of solid pitching and defense. However, also in those contests, the Wildcats scored a combined 13 runs — or 2.6 per outing — thus resulting in a 2-3 record during the stretch.
On Tuesday night against Shoemaker, the bats joined in on the fun.
Aaron Wagaman and Vance Willis teamed up to throw a no-hitter, Temple produced 10 hits and its highest District 12-6A run total, and rolled to a 12-2 victory over the Grey Wolves at Hallford Field.
“It was nice to see,” said Temple head coach Dallas Robertson, whose team won its third straight. “We haven’t been putting up runs. We’ve been playing good defense and pitching, we just haven’t put up a lot of runs. And we needed this one to hopefully get us going for Friday.
“They’re hungry and they’re playing hard, so if we continue to do that, and have some good practices Wednesday and Thursday, I feel good about it.”
What lies ahead Friday is a rematch with Ellison, which defeated the Wildcats 2-1 on March 14 for one of Temple’s four league losses by three runs or less. The fifth-place Wildcats (11-14-1, 7-5) will enter that matchup 1½ games behind the third-place Eagles and a half-game out of the fourth and final playoff spot currently held by Copperas Cove with four regular-season contests remaining.
Wagaman cruised through the first three innings before some trouble in the fourth inning, when he walked a pair and Shoemaker (0-19, 0-12) tallied two runs on a dropped third strike and an RBI ground out by Daniel Villarreal.
Temple got a run back in the bottom of the frame when Walter Anderson scored on a passed ball and Willis pitched a scoreless fifth, before Temple ended matters via run-rule through Gabe Garza’s RBI single that plated Brandon Goynes.
Corey Goynes finished 4-for-4 for Temple, including an RBI single in the Wildcats’ eight-run third. Garza went 2-for-4, and Xavier Aviles, Adrian Carlos, Brandon Goynes and Willis had one hit apiece.
After Friday — Temple’s final road game — the Wildcats’ crucial closing stretch includes home dates with Copperas Cove, Harker Heights and Waco Midway.
“We need to focus on Ellison on Friday, focus on what we need to do to get the win,” Robertson said.
TUESDAY'S 12-6A SCORES
- Ellison 2, Copperas Cove 0
- Temple 12, Shoemaker 2, 5 innings
- Waco 3, Harker Heights 2, 9 innings
- Waco Midway 12, Belton 2, 6 innings