Cheyenne Hornbuckle is used to playing the role of big sister.
But the experience the Stockdale standout second baseman got on Tuesday was one that had never happened before and something the Kansas-bound senior likely won’t soon forget.
In the Southwest Yosemite League opener at home against Centennial, Cheyenne batted in front of her younger sisters, Sydney and Katelyn, to start off the lineup for the Mustangs. She also played behind them with Sydney pitching and Katelyn filling in at catcher and the No. 2 spot in the lineup for Seno Santoyo.
Sydney threw a three-hit gem and had three runs batted in. Cheyenne had three RBI and Katelyn reached base four times as Stockdale beat the Golden Hawks 11-1 for the 37th consecutive league win for the Mustangs.
“It’s pretty cool because until last year, I never got to be on the field with them,” Cheyenne said about playing with her sophomore twin sisters. “To see them work together and to get all three of us working on our chemistry together, it’s pretty awesome. I don’t know anyone else that gets to say, ‘My two sisters bat behind me and they get to score me.’”
That was a continuous trend on Tuesday.
Cheyenne led off the first inning with a walk and scored on a double by Sydney after Katelyn’s sacrifice bunt advanced Cheyenne to second for Stockdale (8-2, 1-0).
In the fifth inning, Katelyn reached base on a fielding error in the outfield and Sydney walked. The two scored on a three-run double by Izzy Nieblas.
Finally, in the bottom of the sixth inning, Sydney’s two-run single ended the game with Cheyenne scoring the final run on the 10-run rule with two outs in the inning.
“I like being able to help them with stuff that I’ve been able to do throughout high school,” Cheyenne said. “I want to help them to be better than I am.”
Sydney, who committed to Colorado State over the summer, has one of the best offspeed pitches in the Central Section and when the pitch is called, Cheyenne says it takes a lot for her not to smile knowing what is coming at opposing batters.
“It’s amazing. I can’t help but smile because I know it’s coming,” Cheyenne said. “I get ecstatic. I see that sign and before it even happens, I am stoked.”
Stockdale head coach Amanda Hockett has now won 198 games since taking over the program in 2009, including five 20-plus win seasons. Even Hockett is amazed by what the Hornbuckle sisters have been able to accomplish together on the field.
“I know it’s a great feeling for the family for them to all play together and for them to all play on the field this year,” Hockett said.
Last season, Sydney was the starting pitcher and Cheyenne started at second base while Katelyn filled in primarily as a pinch runner.
“It’s exciting to watch them blossom together and mesh well together,” Hockett said.
Centennial (6-4, 0-1) was held to just three hits, but got on the board in the top of the sixth inning as Hannah Mosesian hit an RBI single to right field, scoring Ali Smith for the lone run for the Golden Hawks.
Kim Mireles scored three times out of the No. 9 hole in the batting order for the Mustangs.
Nieblas drove in four runs for Stockdale and now has 17 RBI in 10 games.