The game was in danger of breaking open in the top of the sixth inning of Saturday’s District 29-5A baseball game at Riverside Stadium.
Corpus Christi Veterans Memorial had two on with no outs, but East catcher Cory Cann caught Brady Parker’s relay from center field to tag out Vets’ Homar Barrera at home plate, completing the double play and keeping it a one-run game.
Cann’s play behind home plate has been a presence for Victoria East baseball for four years, and this week, Cann became the latest Titan to earn the opportunity to play college baseball with his verbal commitment to Texas A&M International University.
“It’s very rewarding,” Cann said. “It’s refreshing. I worked very hard for it. I want to be in that moment. I can’t wait to be in that moment. But I want to finish this season here and finish. Play for my teammates.”
Cann hit a ball hard to right field in the bottom of the sixth, but it was one of a handful of hard hit balls caught by the Veterans Memorial defense.
Eagles pitcher Xavier Perez pitched seven innings, giving up one run on one hit, striking out five and walking three as Vets won 3-1.
East took advantage of three Vets errors and had runners on in the third through sixth innings, but Ceyth Grevey’s fifth inning RBI double, scoring Mason Sockwell after a walk, was the Titans’ only hit of the night.
“We need to do everything we can to progress in a way we haven’t yet,” Grevey said. “Find a new gear and be angry with all these losses and all these games we haven’t won. It’s frustrating as a captain to see that we are failing as a whole team, and I’m the leader who needs to be doing a job and be helping out more.”
Caleb Korczynski started on the mound for East and pitched 5.2 innings, giving up three runs on four hits and walking three.
Vets led 2-0 after two innings, but East managed to hang around. The Titans’ defense held the Eagles to one hit between the third and fifth innings, but the offense never found a chance to take advantage.
“We were pretty clean defensively,” said East head coach Wes Kolle. “We’ve just got to come through with some clutch hits. They were throwing one of their guys, and we’ve got to find a way to get those guys in. We got them on but we got to come up with a two-out hit.”
Vets added an insurance run with Nic Guererro’s RBI double in the sixth inning, scoring Jake Martinez. The relay throw was on target, but Cann was unable to come up with his second straight tag out at home plate.
Perez struck out the side in the bottom of the seventh to hand East its third straight loss.
“At some point you’ve got to be tired of losing,” Cann said. “We should be winning ball games that we shouldn’t lose. That’s one of them. (Perez) did a great job on the mound for their team, a quality pitcher, but we’ve got to string together as a team to get some hits.”
East is now in last place in District 29-5A and will play Flour Bluff at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Riverside Stadium.
“I tell these guys, here on out we’ve got to play like you’ve been playing the rest of your life. Have fun with it,” Cann said. “Last year was taken away from me so I play every game like it’s my last. We’re going to go together and figure out a way to win.”
Corpus Christi Veterans Memorial 3, Victoria East 1
Vets: 110 001 0 — 3 6 3
East: 000 010 0 — 1 1 2
W: Xavier Perez; L: Caleb Korzcynski
Highlights: (E) Ceyth Grevey 1-for-2, RBI, 2B, BB; Mason Sockwell 0-for-1, R, BB; Cory Cann 0-for-2, BB; (V) Xavier Perez 7.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 5 K, 0-for-2, R, BB; Jake Martinez 2-for-2, R, BB; Jake Rabe 1-for-3, RBI, R, 2B; Nic Guererro 1-for-3, RBI, 2B; Nick Reyes 1-for-3, RBI
Records: East 5-16-2, 2-8; Vets 19-5-1, 8-2