After hanging on for a 9-8 win over Blue Ridge Tuesday afternoon, the Longhorn baseball squad might want to tap the Bee Gee's disco hit "Stayin' Alive" as their team song.
Staying alive is just what the victory did for the Horns in the chase for a top-four East finish and a berth in the state tournament.
With the victory, the Horns improved their East record to 6-4-2 with a season-ending showdown today (Friday) looming against twice-beaten, league-leading Show Low.
The chase for the three final playoff spots behind the Cougars is tighter than the presidential election in Florida.
The closeness of the race leaves little doubt the Horns' early season ties against Round Valley and Pinnacle must be played off early next week before the state tournament begins. The results of those games could make or break the Longhorns' dreams of advancing to state.
According to coach Teddy Pettet, play in the two ties will resume at the same point in the game as when the contests were ended, which means both would begin in the top of the eighth inning.
The score in the Pinnacle game, when it was ended, was 4-4.
In the Round Valley clash, the contest was deadknotted 6-6.
If the Horns can rally for victories in both contests, they'll probably be packin' their bags for state. One win in two playoffs would give the Horns a fighting chance to advance. Two losses, and the Horns could be watching state games from the stands.
But for now, the race is too close to call.
In Tuesday's stinging of the Yellow Jackets on PHS diamond, junior Ky Bradley went the distance on the hill giving up 11 hits and six earned runs. He also struck out seven and walked three.
Scotty Garduno led the Horn offense with a three-for-three performance that included two home runs lifted over the left centerfield fence and three RBIs.
Waylon Pettet was three for four, scored three runs and rocketed a shot out of the PHS field.
Most importantly, however, it was his heads-up play in the bottom of the sixth that scored what eventually proved to be the winning run.
With the Horns up 8-6 and Pettet on third, the sophomore speedster took advantage of Jacket mental lapse on the mound.
While the hurler had his back turned to third, Waylon successfully stole home, scoring the ninth and winning run.