Baseball: Break in the action – Eagles trail 3-1 in opening game

By Richard Greene | Published Saturday, May 20, 2017
Tags: , ,

Share this page...
Grabbing Air

GRABBING AIR – Decatur’s Trey Penny hurdles the Sanger catcher in the first inning. Penny avoided the tag on the play but was called out for not sliding on the play. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Down to their final three outs Thursday night, Mother Nature gave the Decatur Eagles a break of 20-plus hours to come up with a plan to score a pair of runs and avoid a loss in game one of the Class 4A Region II quarterfinals.

Sanger owned a 3-1 lead in top of the seventh and had a runner on first with no outs, when lightning brought a halt to the action. The game resumed at 6:30 p.m. Friday in Argyle with game two following. A third game, if necessary, is tentatively slated for noon Saturday.

“We’ve got nearly 24 hours to figure it out. You never know. It’s a funny game,” said Decatur coach Brian Tickell.

Decatur will need to give the ball to someone other than ace Bryce Elder to finish the top of the seventh and keep the Eagles within two runs. Tickell said Elder would not return to the mound after throwing 101 pitches Thursday.

Through the first two rounds of the playoffs, Elder displayed unhittable stuff. He threw back-to-back no-hitters against Dallas Pinkston and Melissa and had streak of 27 scoreless innings coming into the game.

Sanger ended the hitless string two batters into game and the scoreless stretch by plating a run in the top of the third on back-to-back Decatur errors. But it was the two-out, RBI-triple by Brock Howard in the top of the fourth that put Sanger into lead. The Indians soon added a third run on a double steal.

“It was one of those nights,” said Elder, who struck out 12 in six-plus innings. “I was throwing ball good. At the wrong time I missed a spot, and they made me pay for it.

“We’ve got to bounce back tomorrow. We’re still in this game.”

Elder, who will leave the game with property at first base after a lead-off walk in the seventh, allowed three runs – two earned – on four hits and four walks.

Decatur took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second after Jaxon Terrell led off with a single and came home on Eddie Fernandez’ bloop single.

Decatur had just one hit over the next four innings. In three of the frames, Decatur managed to get the lead-off hitter aboard but couldn’t score off Sanger starter Zane Walden or reliever Julien Ly. Walden held Decatur to a run on five hits in four innings. Ly followed with two hitless and scoreless innings.

“Coming into the series, I said we’ve got to be able to hit with them. Right now, we’re not doing it,” Tickell said. “We’re puzzled right now at the plate. We have to figure out an approach to get to [Ly] and sure up some stuff defensively.”

Leave a Reply. Note: As of March 24, 2011, all posted comments will include the users full name. News and Blog Comment Guidelines

You must be logged in to post a comment.