COMANCHE – Early rallied from eight runs down to stun the Comanche Indians in their first District 6-3A baseball meeting, but another comeback wasn’t in the cards for the Longhorns Friday afternoon.
Early slipped below the .500 mark in district competition with their second straight defeat, 15-6, to Comanche, which moved into a tie for first place in the 6-3A standings after Dublin stunned Brady, 5-4. With the loss, the Longhorns (7-10, 4-5) and Bangs (6-13, 4-5) are now tied for fourth place, and the winner of their 7 p.m. Tuesday contest will earn the district’s final playoff berth — joining Brady (16-3, 7-2), Comanche (10-7, 7-2) and Dublin (6-11, 5-4).
In Early’s loss Friday, Comanche jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first, but Early drew even at 4 in the top of the third. The Indians answered with another fourth spot in the bottom half and added a run in the fifth to open a 9-4 advantage. After the Longhorns crept within 9-6 in the top of the sixth, the Indians put the game away with six runs in the bottom of the frame.
The Longhorns finished with 11 hits — two each by Jonathan Morales, Jayden Lehde and Boston Hudson, and one apiece from Ryan Hill, Devyn Burns, Chase Keilers, Jesson Tarrant and Brandon Lombrano. Hudson and Lombrano both drove in two runs while Morales and Keilers each collected an RBI.
On the mound for Early, Ethan Portillo worked three innings and gave up eight runs — four earned — on five hits with a pair of walks and one strikeout. Lombrano worked 2.1 innings and surrendered six runs — four earned — on four hits with one walk. Tarrant pitched 2/3 of an inning with one run allowed on one walk and one strikeout.
Defensively, Early committed five errors.