More often that not during this long, forgettable season, the Garden City Wind has seen its share of early leads dissipate into another desultory loss.
That’s what happens when you’re struggling through a 10-46 season, more than 30 games out of first and long ago eliminated from postseason playoff consideration.
Monday was another example of the way the Wind has seen its sails lowered.
But it should come as no surprise since they were up against the Alpine (Texas) Cowboys, who held the best record among the three divisions of the Pecos League at 45-14.
The end result was a 17-5 loss by the Wind to see its record slip to 10-49. The teams will meet again Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at Clint Lightner Stadium.
This time, they trailed early, 1-0, then 5-0, before making a mini-comeback with two runs of its own in the third and a single tally in the fourth to trim Alpine’s Cowboys’ lead to 5-3 at the time.
The two-run third for the Wind came on back-to-back home runs, with Ryan Whitt hitting the first one and that was followed by Cole Fenner’s deep shot. The long ball continued to be productive for the Wind as Chase Martin stroked a two-out solo shot.
But that brief closure of score didn’t last long as the Cowboys strung together a four-run sixth, expanding the lead to 9-3.
After Alpine tacked on a single run in the top of the seventh, the Wind responded in kind when a walk, an error and a single by Dave Gallagher brought Tommy Haas home. But Gallagher was stranded at third to end the inning.
Another single run in the eighth by the Cowboys increased the Wind’s deficit to 11-4.
In the Wind’s eighth, Gallagher had an RBI single with two outs, scoring Ryan Faircloth, who had opened the inning with a single. The inning came to an end, though, when Brian Rosensteel was thrown out at home plate, trying to score from second base.
To make matters worse when the game was already decided, the Cowboys finished the night off with six runs in the top of the ninth.