ALVIN – Santa Fe ace Brandon Holder had a little extra motivation facing bitter rival Friendswood, and it definitely showed in Thursday’s playoff game.

Holder led the Indians to a 1-0 victory with a two-hit complete-game shutout, and while he was calm and collected on the mound during the game, Holder said he was chomping at the bit beforehand.

“I was pretty antsy all day today,” Holder said.

Holder was perfect through 51/3 innings before surrendering his first hit of the game to Friendswood left fielder Bryan Fowler, who punched a single into right field.

With two outs in the top of the seventh inning, Mustangs third baseman Drew Barba sent a single into right field, but the very next pitch was grounded to shortstop to seal up the win for the Indians.

Holder had no walks and seven strikeouts in the two-hit shutout win. Holder’s Friendswood counterpart Ryan Shetter was nearly as impressive in the tough defeat, giving up one run on six hits and one walk with eight strikeouts.

Just in the nick of time

While Holder was baffling Friendswood batters, Santa Fe saw a few opportunities to get Holder some run support pass them by.

“It could have gone either way,” Indians head coach Ronnie Wulf said. “We had our chances early but didn’t capitalize on them. We just kept battling and finally got the hit that scored the run.”

Santa Fe center fielder Preston Plovanich smacked the very first pitch he saw in the bottom of the first into right-center field for a double.

After a sacrifice bunt by Holder, Plovanich was left stranded on third after consecutive groundouts.

In the second inning, Santa Fe got a two-out rally going with back-to-back singles by second baseman David Reyna and left fielder Aaron Theut, but Shetter struck out designated hitter John Snider to end the inning.

A single by Plovanich, a third-base throwing error and another sacrifice bunt put a runner on third with one out for the Indians again, but after a strikeout, an intentional walk and a strikeout, the Mustangs escaped trouble again in the third.

Santa Fe finally got their breakthrough run in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI single by Theut that drove in shortstop Yadir Muniz, who reached on a first-baseman error.

On deck

With Santa Fe now leading the best-of-three regional quarterfinal series 1-0, the two rivals will meet again 7 p.m. today in Alvin.

“We can’t get too high and have to come back ready to play,” Wulf said.

Game 3, if needed, will be 12:30 p.m. Saturday in Alvin.

High school playoff glance

Friendswood vs. Santa Fe

All games at Alvin High School

Game 1: Santa Fe 1, Friendswood 0

Game 2: 7 p.m. today

*Game 3: 12:30 p.m. Saturday

*-If necessary

Contact Sports Editor James LaCombe at 409-683-5242 or at Follow him on Twitter



(4) comments

Keith Gray

I haven't seen a game that exciting since the BWood vs. Creek games in 08 and 09... Great Job Indians... it should be another tight one tonight, and I hope to see the same support for both teams show up.

I can't think of anything better on a Friday night (well if you are over 50) to do than to come out and support and watch a great baseball game.

Outstanding performance by both pitchers (Holder was elite), and by Preston P. at the plate.

Robert Buckner

I'd guessed this would be a great series. Good luck to all teams seeking to advance in the playoffs.


Listen, I want to see more support for those SF girls on this forum!!! Boys is doing alright,....but Suseri 'nem need that support! Who is the reigning Duke Of Smack this year? I want to talk to that FAKE!!!! What's his name? ( is it that DC guy? )
Ohhhh, I'm just playing! Where is the third game for the girls going to be held,...I got to make plans? See yall don't know the drawbacks to having an entourage following you around! Watch us go out there tonight and drop BH like a bad habit!

Robert Buckner

That Barbers Hill team wasn't ranked #1 in the state on a coin flip. Those SF ladies need to get double tough these next two games. Go Indians!

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