Junior Cesar Martin broke out with six RBIs against Atwater High on April 30, but the late rally from Patterson was not enough to spur the Tigers past the Falcons, losing to Atwater 7-6 in eight innings of play on Tuesday.
Patterson drew first blood in the top of the third inning, when Martin drove in sophomore Jordan Imada and senior Alex Mora to take an early 2-0 lead.
Atwater did not respond until the bottom of the fourth, when the Falcons got RBI at bats from sophomore Fernando Ruvalcaba and senior Cristofer Trejo to knot it up at 2-2.
The Tigers retook the lead in the top of the fifth, when Martin drove in Rodriguez in a 2-2 count to edge past the Falcons.
Atwater’s three-run fifth and a run in the sixth extended the lead to a big turnaround putting the home side up 6-3 after six innings of play.
The Falcons were three outs away from a victory, but Patterson had other plans. Imada and Mora set the table, reaching base via back-to-back singles. Martin, who already had three RBIs on the day heading into the at bat, lifted a three-run home run to left field, to dramatically tie the game in the seventh inning.
Martin’s home run gave Patterson a new lease on life, but the Tigers failed to score in the eighth inning.
Atwater got the last laugh, when junior Nathaniel Silva lifted a sacrifice fly to center fielder Joseph McGarry, to score senior Dylan McCartney with a walk-off victory.
Martin ended the day going 3-4 at the plate with six RBIs, a run, and a three-run home run.
Atwater’s Silva was 2-5 with three RBIs, including the game-winning run.
Ruvalcaba was 1-4 with two RBIs.
Senior Jakob Faulk threw seven innings for the Falcons, yielding three earned runs, seven hits, zero walks and three strikeouts.
Atwater improved to 20-4 overall and 7-2 in conference play.
Patterson dropped to 10-12 and 4-5 in league play.
Patterson will host Atwater on May 2 at the Patterson High varsity baseball field.
The Tigers will finish off their season with a pair of games against El Capitan High.
Patterson is set to play at El Capitan on May 6, before hosting the Gauchos on May 7.
Patterson is fighting with El Capitan and Golden Valley for the third and fourth playoff spots in the Central California Conference. Each of the last three games will be critical in deciding who advances, and at what seed.
The CIF Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs are scheduled for May 14.