PONDER - It's not too often rain delays are considered a good thing.
For Perrin's baseball team, a delay of more than four hours before their bi-district match up with Vernon Northside may have helped. In the eyes of more than one player, team bonding before the game helped make the Pirates even stronger.
Perrin won that one-game playoff, 18-0, which started a three-game win streak that continued into the regional-quarterfinal round Friday and Saturday with a two-game sweep of Savoy, 11-5 and 13-3.
The Pirates will face Dodd City in the regional semifinals.
Brief summaries of both games follow:
Perrin 11, Savoy 5
A seven-run fifth inning broke this game open.
Both teams threatened in the first three innings but couldn't get a run across. The Pirates took a 1-0 lead in the fourth on a Michael Goodman infield single, with walks to Tyce Lambert and Jacob Kinder and a Tyler Welch hit by a pitch.
The Pirates took control of the game, and series, using a big fifth frame, which opened with Landon Draper reaching on catcher interference. Goodman reached again on a fielder's choice to put runners at the corners, and Lambert was hit by a pitch to load the sacks.
The trio came home on Kinder's single off reliever Connor Sweet and a wild pitch to give the Pirates a 4-0 lead.
A wild pitch, RBI singles from Sammy Hernandez and Draper and a gutsy steal of home by Welch, who had walked, ended the scoring.
The Cardinals nearly erased the 8-0 deficit with a five-run sixth off RW Aldridge, which consisted off an infield hit and six straight walks.
Perrin got three of the runs back in the bottom of the inning.
Kinder was hit by a one-out pitch and stole second. With two gone, a pick-off throw to third to retire Kinder was off the mark, allowing him to score.
Pirate Anthony Pacheco drew a walk and Welch singled and moved to second on the throw. A wild pitch plated Pacheco and preceded a Hernandez run on a Welch RBI single.
Savoy picked up two singles in the seventh but couldn't score.
Perrin Coach Jeff Browning said Aldridge was not at his best because of the heavy drizzle throughout the 2:51 encounter.
"Moisture was causing his normally reliable curve ball to slip out of his hands because they weren't drying the balls," Browning said. "He was able to get himself out of it, though."
Perrin 13, Savoy 3 (5 innings)
A five-run opening at-bat gave Hernandez all the runs he'd need on the hill. The Pirates would come through with plenty more to end the game via the mercy rule.
Walks to Chance Tessman and Welch opened the game.
A wild pitch scored Tessman and Welch and Hernandez, who reached on an error, both scored on an Aldridge single for a 3-0 lead.
Draper was hit by a pitch and Goodman drew a walk before a fielder's choice and an error on the same play plated two more runs.
Kinder doubled to advance Lambert to third before the next two hitters were retired.
Savoy got on the board with a single and a pair of errors to cut the lead to 5-1, but Perrin struck for five more runs in the fourth.
Hernandez and Aldridge each had one-out singles and scored, as Draper came through with an inside the park home run into the right-center field gap for an 8-1 cushion.
A Goodman single and walks to Lambert and Kinder filled the sacks for the senior Tessman, who singled home a pair.
Two Pirate base runners were stranded, as the next hitter was retired, but Perrin struck for three more runs in the fifth.
Hernandez tripled and scored on Aldridge's sac fly for an 11-1 lead.
Back-to-back doubles by Draper and Goodman and a Cardinal error, which allowed Adrian Masterson aboard, provided a pair of insurance runs.
The Pirate pitcher Hernandez struck out seven without a walk to earn the series-clinching win. He allowed just two hits.