San Tan Foothills beat Payson 3-1 in baseball at Salt River Fields At Talking Stick on Thursday afternoon to snap the Longhorns’ 10-game winning streak.
STF improved to 6-6. Payson fell to 11-2 in power points games and slid from No. 2 to No. 4 in Friday’s 3A rankings.
The Longhorns managed just four hits and three walks. Makoa Rich singled in Wade Parton with their only run in the third inning to cut the Sabercats’ lead to 2-1. But the visitors tacked on another run in the seventh.
“It just wasn’t a good day for us,” said Payson coach Brian Young. “We knew San Tan was going to be good — they are way better than their record indicates. They have played a tough schedule and are going to be a very tough matchup for someone in the state tournament.
“We just didn’t battle through some at-bats like we have been. We have to manage more than four hits in a game — especially with our offense. So it was a bit disappointing. Their pitcher threw a good game, but it wasn’t anything that we shouldn’t have been able to handle.”
Jesse Conway scattered four hits and three walks with seven strikeouts in pitching the first six innings. River Phillips allowed three hits and one run with two strikeouts in pitching the final inning.
Payson didn’t make any errors.
“I thought Jesse threw a really good game and gave us a chance to win,” Young said. “When he goes six innings and only gives up two runs that is a game we win most of the time, especially when we don’t make any errors.”
The Longhorns carry a 6-0 record in 3A East games into Friday’s region showdown with visiting Snowflake. The Lobos are No. 6 in the 3A rankings with a 10-3. They are 4-2 and in 3A East and second place, two games back of Payson.