Thompson, McDonald lead the Chanclas to a 5-3 victory

Kyte McDonald singles in the bottom of the fourth inning to drive in the Flying Chanclas' first run of the game against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander

Kyte McDonald singles in the bottom of the fourth inning to drive in the Flying Chanclas’ first run of the game against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander

The Flying Chanclas de San Antonio don’t always play with precision. But they do play with heart on most nights. They did it again Sunday, rallying from an early deficit and then hanging on late to claim a 5-3 victory over the Victoria Generals at Wolff Stadium.

In the finale of six straight games between the teams, the Generals led by one run when the Chanclas exploded for four in the bottom of the fifth to take charge, 5-2. Jordan Thompson ripped a two-run double and Kyte McDonald had an RBI single in the outburst.

Flying Chanclas starter Lance Lusk from Sam Houston State pitched 6.0 innings and allowed two runs on five hits with five strikeouts and no walks against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander

Flying Chanclas starter Lance Lusk, from Sam Houston State, earned the victory by pitching six innings and allowing two runs. He lowered his earned run average to 2.35. – Photo by Joe Alexander

The win allowed the Chanclas to take the series with the Generals, 4-2. It also lifted them into first place in the Texas Collegiate League South Division with an 11-6 record. San Antonio won two of three in Victoria and two of three in San Antonio.

It was the second straight night that the Chanclas climbed out of a deficit on the scoreboard to win, though it wasn’t quite as dramatic as Saturday night’s 7-6 victory in 11 innings. On Saturday, the Chanclas trailed by 5-1 early and by 5-2 going into the bottom of the ninth.

On Sunday, Thompson and McDonald took matters into their own hands. Thompson, batting leadoff, went 2 for 4 and had 2 RBI. Batting fifth, McDonald enjoyed a 3-for-4 performance. He also had two RBI. It was McDonald’s second 3-hit game of the week.

Lance Lusk pitched six innings for the Chanclas, the longest outing by a starter for the team this season. He allowed two runs on five hits. Jaime Ramirez Jr. and Connor Schmidt finished the game.

With the bases loaded in the ninth, Schmidt got Steve Bonuz on a fly ball to left field to end the game.

Flying Chanclas right fielder Jordan Thompson races toward the warning track to catch a fly ball against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander

Flying Chanclas right fielder Jordan Thompson races toward the warning track to catch a fly ball Sunday night. – Photo by Joe Alexander

Runs-hits-errors

Victoria — 3-7-0
San Antonio — 5-9-0
Please click on the link for Sunday’s box score.

Records

Victoria 7-11
San Antonio 11-6

Coming up

The Chanclas have a day off on Monday before they open a series with the Brazos Valley Bombers Tuesday night at Wolff. Brazos Valley is second in the TCL South at 9-6. Acadiana won at home, defeating Brazos Valley 5-1 Sunday night.

Notable

Kyte McDonald hit for a .346 average against the Generals. In six games, he went 9 for 26, including a double, a triple and a home run. McDonald also produced five RBI and scored six runs.

Flying Chanclas catcher Tyler LaRue throws to first on a bunt against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander

Flying Chanclas catcher Tyler LaRue throws to first on a bunt against the Victoria Generals on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander

Flying Chanclas rally to post their fifth straight victory

Jordan Thompson’s leadoff homer sparked a five-run seventh inning Wednesday night as the Flying Chanclas de San Antonio rallied for a 6-2 victory over the Victoria Generals in the Texas Collegiate League.

Flying Chanclas manager John McLaren discusses a call with the home play umpire late in the game Sunday night at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander

The Flying Chanclas have won five in a row overall and three in a row on the road for manager John McLaren. – File photo by Joe Alexander

It was the fifth win in a row for the Chanclas, who lead the TCL South division with a 9-4 record.

Trailing 2-0 after four innings, the Chanclas scored once in the sixth inning to get back into the game. In the seventh, they exploded against the Generals’ bullpen for five runs on six hits.

At one point, they scored on three consecutive at bats to silence the home crowd at Victoria’s Riverside Park. Tyler LaRue ripped an RBI single, and then Johnny Hernandez and Anthony Forte followed with back-to-back RBI doubles.

Forte, in his Flying Chanclas debut, finished with three hits, a run scored and an RBI.

Starting pitcher Austin Krob earned the victory, but the bullpen had a major say in the outcome with 5 and 2/3 innings of scoreless relief.

Reliever Johnny Panatex highlighted the effort with 2 and 2/3 innings of work and four strikeouts.

A big moment for Panatex came when he entered in the fourth inning with one out, the bases loaded and the Chanclas trailing 2-0. He escaped the jam when he struck out Jose Diaz and Josh Elvir.

Runs-hits-errors

San Antonio 6 – 13 – 1
Victoria 2 – 9 – 0
Please click on the link for Wednesday’s official box score.

Records

San Antonio 9-4
Victoria 5-9

Coming up

San Antonio at Victoria, 7:05 p.m., Thursday. Victoria at San Antonio, Friday through Sunday, at Wolff Stadium. All at 7:05 p.m.

Notable

Forte, from the University of Richmond, started in right field He joined the team Tuesday, a spokesman said.

Barry sparks eight-run inning as Chanclas claim first TCL victory

Leyton Barry was batting .353 when the pandemic cut short his season at UTSA in March.

Barry produced three hits in a 12-hit attack Thursday night to lead the Flying Chanclas de San Antonio to their first victory in the Texas Collegiate League.

Jordan Thompson and Barry produced two-run singles in an eight-run, eighth inning as the Chanclas rolled to an 11-5 victory at Amarillo.

Runs-hits-errors

San Antonio 11 – 12 – 1
Amarillo 5 – 8 – 2

Please click the link for Thursday night’s box score.

Records

San Antonio 1-2
Amarillo 2-1

Coming up

The Chanclas open at home Friday night against the Acadiana Cane Cutters. Please click the link here for policies related to COVID-19 precautions.

Notable

The Chanclas had only eight hits combined in their first two games, including just two in a 1-0 loss Wednesday night.

Manager John McLaren made an adjustment, moving Porter Brown from second to first in the batting order. Conversely, he moved Thompson from the No. 1 hole to No. 2.

Both Brown and Thompson picked up two hits apiece. Kite McDonald and Lee Thomas also had a pair of hits for the Chanclas.

Chanclas’ smallest player earns a major-college ticket to Texas A&M

In 2019, Jordan Thompson hit .310 in 25 games as a freshman at the University of the Incarnate Word. Notably, he belted a three-run homer to lead UIW’s 6-5 victory at Texas A&M – Photo, courtesy of UIW athletics.

Competing to win a starting job in the outfield for the Flying Chanclas de San Antonio, Jordan Thompson paused Friday night to discuss what the fans might expect when a 30-game Texas Collegiate League season starts next week.

“I think we’re going to be really good,” Thompson said. “I know it’s only been a couple of days, but after what I’ve seen from the pitchers and the hitters (this week), our team looks really, really good. I know that our pitchers are going to be throwing a lot of strikes … and I know that our hitters are going to be more than ready.”

From all indications, Thompson could play a major role despite his physical stature (5-feet-9, 165 pounds) as the smallest player on the squad. He is coming off a spring in which he hit .435 for Grayson College, earning an offer to play next season at Texas A&M.

“I think this summer’s really going to help me develop as a player, because of our coaching staff,” Thompson said. “They’ve had so much experience at the professional level. It just gives me an opportunity to pick their brains and learn what I have to do to better myself, to (reach) the next level.

“And our team, it just has a lot of talent on it. (I want to) just pick their brains, too. Because there’s obviously a reason where they are. You can always learn a lot of things from a lot of people, different perspectives. It’ll just be really good getting that from everyone else.”

In 2018, as a senior at Boerne Champion, Thompson hit .548 and earned first-team, all-state honors in Class 5A.

Judged as too small by some major college recruiters, he accepted an offer to play as a freshman at the University of the Incarnate Word, where he made headlines early in the spring with a three-run home run to beat A&M at College Station.

But just as Thompson started to make substantial progress with the Cardinals, hitting at a .310 clip over the first 25 games, he suffered a painful back injury that knocked him out for the season.

Later that year, in the summer, Thompson was confronted with another bit of adversity when Pat Hallmark resigned as UIW’s coach to take a job at UTSA.

The ball player decided he, too, would leave.

Thompson turned up for the 2020 season at Grayson, a powerful junior college program located in Denison, about 70 miles north of the Dallas-Fort Worth MetroPlex.

Intent on proving himself, he jump all over the baseball, pounding out 27 hits in 62 at bats in 19 games.

Of those hits, six went for doubles, two for triples and five for home runs. He also drove in 21 runs in the coronavirus-shortened season, prompting the Aggies to come calling.

Thompson, who will enroll at A&M in the fall, said “it feels great” to get the scholarship to a Southeastern Conference program.

“My journey to get there was a little unconventional, but it’s my journey, and I wouldn’t change it for the world,” he said. “Going from UIW, a coaching staff change, leaving to go to Grayson, then going on to Texas A&M, I love my story. I’m just really excited to be where I want to be. It’s every kid’s dream to go to a Power 5 conference, Texas A&M especially.”

Even though he humbled the Aggies with his mighty swing for UIW two seasons ago and ripped five more over the fence at Grayson, Thompson’s game revolves more around hitting for average and then running the bases aggressively.

“I think that’s real big (in my game),” he said. “The presence of speed on the bases … will speed up the pitcher’s head. They always have to worry about you on first base, second base. There’s a lot of problems you can create with speed.”

To illustrate his point, Thompson, who hits from the right side, said he singled into left field once earlier this spring against Ranger Junior College. He said he took advantage when he noticed that the fielder was playing the ball with a “lackadaisical” effort.

“I just decided to go for a double,” he said. “It caused a little problem. They were all frantic. And, just got into their heads.”

It’s a style that should mesh with Chanclas manager John McLaren’s philosophy of pushing the pace in a game. Thompson said he thinks he will enjoy playing that style, under McLaren, a former manager with the Seattle Mariners and Washington Nationals.

“I like to put pressure on people, because some people can’t take the pressure,” he said. “Some people will just fold underneath it. I love the pressure and I embrace it. I use it to help drive me through games and practice. Being aggressive, that’s just how I am.”