Grapevine second baseman London Green doubled home the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh inning and relief pitcher Boone Montgomery got the final two outs as the Mustangs beat Corpus Christi Moody 3-2 Thursday in a UIL Class 5A state semifinal at Dell Diamond.
Grapevine (33-12) goes for a second consecutive state title at noon Saturday against Port Neches-Groves (33-8-2). The Indians beat Frisco Wakeland 3-2 in the other semifinal.
“It was a cutter high and away,” Green said of the game-winning hit. “It was a hit-and-run, so I was just thinking ‘Hit it in the right-center gap,’ and it happened.”
Moody (30-3-3), rallied from a 2-0 deficit with runs in the fifth and sixth innings.
Trojans center fielder Roy Sandoval singled to drive in Robert Arredondo with the tying run. Arredondo had reached on a walk and stolen second.
“Against those guys sometimes a tie game feels like you’re trailing,” Grapevine coach Steven Hutcherson said. “They’re tough and they get everything rolling. You’ve got to fight a lot of elements, but we found a way to fight them tonight.”
Moody baseball has qualified for 13 UIL state tournaments. Grapevine’s first was last year.
“We try to let them go out there and do their thing. The game is theirs,” Hutcherson said of his team. “We make subtle adjustments, but we try not to micro-manage everything. It was about them going and getting the job done.”
Grapevine catcher Jonathan Hearn got the seventh-inning rally started by beating out a grounder to short for an infield hit. Zack Rice pinch ran for Hearn. Rice scored from first when Green belted the double, his second hit of the night.
“It would mean the biggest thing for us seniors,” said Green of repeating. “We worked all fall, all winter for this thing.”