Wildcats rally to take third

CNJ staff

RIO RANCHO — Clovis coach Shane Shallenberger figured sophomore Parker Wood would be a force on the mound. He just didn’t think it would happen this quickly.

Wood pitched 3 2/3 scoreless innings in relief of senior starter Cade Wheeler and the Wildcats rallied to beat St. Pius 8-7 Saturday in the third-place game of the Rio Rancho Invitational Saturday.

Clovis took advantage of St. Pius’ seven errors in the game, including four in the third inning that led to five Wildcat runs on three hits.

“Parker’s been really great on the mound, and a great surprise,” Shallenberger said. “He struggled in the summer, but toward the end he started to come around.

“He’s been pretty dominant.”

Wood, who earned a save and a win during the tournament while throwing 6 1/3 hitless innings, was named to the all-tournament team along with junior Jarod Kiser.

Kiser went a combined 5-for-8 at the plate with three RBI and a pair of runs during the three-day tourney.

“It just seemed like he was the one always getting the inning started,” Shallenberger said of Kiser.