Broncs varsity baseball squad scores 49 runs in sweeping two games to open the season

Seth Stockwell Photo by Isabel Anzaldo

By Mike Blake

The Kern Valley Broncs varsity baseball team opened the 2024 season last week and scored at will, defeating Mojave 32-0 and Laton 17-3 to start the year at 2-0. The Broncs scored 49 runs in only seven innings at the plate.

In the season opener, February 22, on the road at Mojave, Kern Valley took a 19-0 lead in the first inning and continued to pour it on before the game was called after four. KV added five runs in the second, five in the third and three in the fourth for the 32-run margin.

Zack Wargo led the Broncs’ stampede at the plate and on the hill. Winning pitcher Wargo was nearly perfect, toeing the slab, striking out nine of the 10 Mojave batters he faced, throwing three hitless innings, walking one and K-ing nine. Aiden Madden finished up with one hitless inning in relief, striking out two and walking one.

Wargo might have been more impressive at the dish, where he went 5-for-5, with five RBIs, five runs scored and a double. His fifth safety was also the 50th career hit as a Kern Valley varsity player.

Also ripping at the plate for KV were Zane Carver – 3-for-3, one RBI in his first-ever high school baseball game; Jordan Mead – 2-for-5, three runs, two RBIs, one double; Ethan Stockwell – 2-for-4, three runs scored and four RBIs; Cameron Thomas – 2-for-2, three runs, two RBIs and a double; and Seth Stockwell – blasted a three-run homerun. Along with Carver, Auden Quezada and Owinn Liske also collected their first varsity hits.

Broncs baseball coach Mike Genthner said the team came out with purpose and energy. “It was a solid first game at the plate and in the field.” 

In their second game of the year, the Broncs walked their way to victory and again got a sterling starting pitching performance. Kern Valley hosted Laton, February 23 and stampeded to  17-3 win, mustering out only three hits but working 17 walks and taking three hit batsmen. The game was called after three innings due to darkness and to the Laton team arriving late.

On the mound, starting pitcher Seth Stockwell (1-0) pitched 2-2/3 innings and allowed no hits, walking four, striking out four and allowing two earned runs. He was picked up in relief by Aiden Madden, who struck out the only batter he faced.

On offense, Zack Wargo went 1-for-2, walked twice and scored three runs. Stockwell was 1-for-1 with two walks, two runs scored and two RBIs. Cameron Thomas got the Broncs’ other hit, going 1-for-1 with two walks, two runs, two ribbies and a stolen base.

“We showed patience and took what was offered – including the walks,” said Genthner.

Kern Valley takes its 2-0 record to the home field Wednesday at 3:15 p.m. vs. Trona, then hosts Windward (3-1) Friday, at 3:15 p.m.