Community Champions: Socorro baseball team ready for round three

Community Champions: Socorro Baseball...

When people think of Socorro baseball, they often think about the 2009 team that won a state title.

But the 2017 version of the Bulldogs is looking to create a new legacy.

So far, so good.

The Bulldogs have knocked off Midland Lee and Arlington Lamar so far this postseason to earn a date with Arlington Martin in the regional quarterfinals.

Socorro and Montwood are the only two public schools in El Paso still alive in the state baseball playoffs.

They happen to play in the same district - a district that prepared the Bulldogs for the postseason.

"The teams are really great and they prepared us well," said Socorro's Raul Lopez.  "Once we went out of town, we were ready for it...Stay tuned.  We have great things ahead of us."

The Bulldogs finished third in 1-6A behind Montwood and Americas, but they're peaking at the right time.

They won three of their final four games in district before embarking on their postseason journey.

And it makes sense that this team has only gotten better as time goes on.  They're very young, after all, with only two seniors comprising their typical starting lineup.  While they may be young, they're confident.

"We're feeling great.  I mean, we go out of town and see all these big people, but we don't really care about that.  Size doesn't matter," said Lopez.

Head coach Joe Alvarez, who was an assistant with the 2009 team that won the state title, says he's delivering the same message to this year's team that he delivered to the Bulldogs eight years ago.

"You've got to take it one pitch at a time.  You've got to stay calm and slow the game down," said Alvarez.  "So, those are things that I constantly preach to them.  Take deep breaths, one pitch at a time, and you're never out of it."

Socorro will begin its best-of-three series against Arlington Martin on Friday in Odessa with game two and game three (if necessary) to follow on Saturday.

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