Scouts Turn Out For Whitehouse’s 3-1 Win Against Longview
LONGVIEW -- There were all kinds of storylines playing out in Whitehouse's 3-1 win against Longview in the opening contest of the 16-game Lobo Classic Challenge on Thursday morning.
The first game of Longview's three-day, round-robin setting featured two aces dueling each other on the mound, two well-known football players going head-to-head and more than 20 baseball scouts in the stands. All with the million dollar question hovering overhead.
Will Whitehouse standout Patrick Mahomes follow through on his commitment to be a quarterback at Texas Tech or will he follow in his father's footsteps to Major League Baseball upon graduation later this semester?
While the Lobos faced Mahomes, the pitcher-quarterback stared back at the batters and radar guns pointed right at him.
"It's surreal because I expected some people to come out, but when you see 20 to 30 (scouts) here it's kind of crazy," Mahomes said. "I just tried to tune it out and play my game."
The truth is Whitehouse's pitcher looked like he was still shaking off some rust. The District 16-4A boy's basketball MVP and major college football recruit wrapped up his basketball career in the 4A Region II quarterfinals on Feb. 25.
His pitches were sometimes wild but generally effective against a very aggressive Lobos lineup. He recorded eight strikeouts while allowing one hit, one late walk, two batters on base after wild pitches on strike three and plunked Longview's Luke Taylor twice through six full innings of work.
He retired from the mound with a shutout opportunity for Jake Parker to close out, but the reliever gave up a run before rallying for the save.
"It's kind of crazy, especially for it only being his second start of the year," Whitehouse skipper Derrick Jenkins said. "He got into a groove, but he kind of got tired at the end just from coming fresh out of basketball. Overall, I thought through the first four innings he stayed in the zone and threw more than one pitch for strikes. If he pitches like that and continues to get better, there's just no telling how good he's going to be."
Longview's Will Bradshaw also got an opportunity in front of the scouts.
He allowed four hits and hit Whitehouse batter Peyton Conser twice, but he only gave up one earned run while on the mound for the Wildcats' first two scores.
"He was real good," Mahomes said. "At bat, I went 0-for-3, so he got me out a few times. He was pitching good. He was changing his stuff up a lot. He'll have a good season."
Mahomes squared off with Longview junior outfielder and starting quarterback Dezmond Chumley three times. Chumley struck out in each of his plate appearances.
Whitehouse catcher Rex Swinney led the way for the Wildcats' offense with a two-RBI single in the fourth inning. It allowed his team to take a 2-0 lead in what had been an absolute pitcher's duel through three innings.
Conser added the third run when he batted in Coleman Patterson on a base hit in the top of the sixth. Patterson connected for a two-out double to shallow left field just prior.
Longview cut the lead to its 3-1 final when left fielder Jordan Wright hit an RBI double to score Bradshaw, playing as a middle infielder, in the bottom seventh.
"I felt like we competed as well as we could and then we kind of gave them some runs and hurt ourselves," Lobo head coach Bernie Martinez said.
Longview immediately followed up its loss to Whitehouse with a 9-2 defeat versus Texas High in a rematch of a contest won by the Tigers earlier this season. The Lobos' record is now 6-9.
Whitehouse, the No. 2 4A team in the state, returned to Longview's diamond for a 2 p.m. game against Texarkana (Ark.) Arkansas High and won 10-1. It closed Thursday with a record of 8-0.
"I pitched well today, but there are a lot of things I could have done better," Mahomes said. "The good thing is I didn't really walk a lot. I was a little wild, but I was getting outs. With the good defense behind me, I was getting some groundouts and pop flies. My defense was making plays and in the end it worked out well."
No. 2 Whitehouse 3, Longview 1
Lobo Classic Challenge
At Lobo Field
Whitehouse 000 201 0 — 3 6 0
Longview 000 000 1 — 1 2 1
Pitchers and Catchers
- Whitehouse: Patrick Mahomes, Jake Parker (7) and Rex Swinney
- Longview: Will Bradshaw, Sam Scarborough (6) and Austin Attaway.
WP — Mahomes
LP — Bradshaw
- Whitehouse: Coleman Patterson
- Longview: Jordan Wright