DADE CITY -
For only the second time this season, Pasco High found itself having to play from behind.
The first time against Wesley Chapel, the Pirates didn't respond and suffered their only loss of the season 5-0. But against Mitchell on Monday, Pasco responded in a big way by putting 5 runs on the board in the sixth inning to defeat the Mustangs 8-3.
"We've been preaching to the kids that there are going to be times we're going to have to play from behind," Pasco coach Ricky Giles said. "And they did that. We got some timely hits when we needed them."
Pirates starter Chris Dious (5-1) gave up two quick runs in the top of the first inning when he walked Steve Brown to lead-off the game and Connor Hale followed with a home run over the left-field fence. Kevin Games followed with a triple but Dious struck out the side to end the threat.
"(Hale) hit a high fastball out and I was able to adjust after that," said Dious, who recorded Pasco's first complete game of the season. "I tried to keep them off-balance and out team kept fighting back."
Pasco (10-1, 7-1 Class 4A-7) took a 3-2 lead in the fourth inning when Cole Stancil hit his first home run of the season on the first pitch from Garret Kriston (3-2). Jacob Guy followed with a single and two outs later, Dious singled to center to drive in two more runs.
Mitchell tied the score at 3-3 in the top of the sixth when Joe Koehler doubled with one out, went to third on a single by Cody Vandeboe and scored on a sacrifice fly by Jordan Dietsch.
But the wheels fell off for the Mustangs (10-5, 7-2 4A-7) in the bottom of the sixth. Brennan Allen was hit by a pitch to start the inning and went to second on a single by Travis Minton and to third on a fly out by Tyler Brock. Dious loaded the bases on a dribbler to third base and Brandon McSwain followed with a single to center to score Allen. It looked like the Mustangs were going to get out of the inning with just the one run scoring but a throw to home to get the force of Minton off a ground ball by Trey Dudley-Giles pulled the catcher off the plate and Minton scored. Adrian Serrato followed with a sacrifice fly to score courtesy-runner Jaxon Moore and two more Pirates scored on a dropped fly ball.
The Mustangs, who were averaging 1.5 errors a game prior to the game, committed four against the Pirates.
It's a busy week for Pasco. Tonight the Pirates travel to Wesley Chapel with sole possession of first place in 4A-7 up for grabs. Then Pasco plays Gulf and Brooksville Central on Thursday and Friday, respectively, before heading the Bud Roth Tournament next week in Fort Myers.
PASCO 8, MITCHELL 3 Mitchell 200 001 0 - 3 6 4 Pasco 000 305 x - 8 8 1 W - Dious (5-1). L - Kriston (3-2). 2B - Koehler (M). 3B - Games (M). HR - Hale (M), Stancil (P). Records - M 10-5, 7-2 4A-7; P - 10-1, 7-1 4A-7.