MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - The Midland College baseball team has some players who are very familiar to West Texas. Five of them grew up in Midland and within that group, a few turned from crosstown rivals to teammates.
"I grew up playing with Ethan Barker, Brayden Payne, and Braden Scrivner. It's fun. It keeps me on my toes. They know me and I know them so It's always a little fun thing to keep going," said Tristan Martinez.
"The intensity and the crosstown match-up was insane and it just carried over and helped fuel us to some wins," said Braden Scrivner.
Ethan Barker and Braden Scrivner are Midland High alums while Tristan Martinez and Brayden Payne are former Lee Rebels. Although they are now teammates, they still give each other a hard time for their last season in high school.
"Me and Ethan keep a joking going because the Midland Lee Rebels swept them (Midland High) our senior year. He gets kind of upset about that one when we bring it up," said Martinez.
"Freshman through junior year I don't think they beat Midland High one time or at least when we played against each other. Senior year rolled around and they swept Midland High three games to nothing. He likes to give me a hard time for those three games that he won out of the 12 total in our high school career. We don't really talk about freshman through junior year just our senior year. Kind of got the last laugh and that's what Tristan likes to bring up more times than not," said Ethan Barker.
Now that these guys are wearing the green and gold together, their crosstown rivalry has turned into a bond on the field.
"It's kind of like a brotherhood. Everybody knows each other. Everybody takes care of each other," said Bradyn Payne.
In addition to those four, Vance Martinez also grew up in the Tall City and knows that being close to your number one fans is definitely bonus.
"Growing up, I always came to the ballpark and watched the games and just wanted to play college baseball after I got done with high school. So when I got the chance to come play here I was really excited about playing in my hometown," said Vance Martinez.
"My entire family lives in town so they get to come and watch every single game. Especially playing opponents who live close to this area they go to road games as well. Being able to have family support is huge," said Barker.
Midland College takes on New Mexico Junior College tomorrow afternoon at the Christensen Field and first pitch is scheduled for 1 pm.