Green Forest rally not enough to beat Blue Eye at home
GREEN FOREST -- Green Forest dropped a 9-8 decision to Blue Eye, Mo, Tuesday afternoon, battling the elements during Spring Break that felt anything like spring.
The Tigers (2-3) went back and forth with the Bulldogs (2-0) down to the final out when Green Forest stranded the tying run at third base and the potential winning run at second.
Green Forest entered the final frame trailing 9-5 when the Tigers rallied for three runs. But Dalton Ewing hit a soft liner to third to end the game.
Devin Taylor started the game on the mound, lasting five innings, allowing five runs on four hits, four walks and five strikeouts. He left with in a 5-5 tie to record no decision. Treyton Anderson finished the final two innings, allowing four runs on four hits with a pair of walks. The Tigers committed three errors behind Anderson as only two of the runs were earned.
"We gave them too much there in those late innings that we shouldn't have given them," Green Forest coach Tony Coffey said. "It wasn't Treyton's fault. We were making mistakes that we gave them runs on. We made some throwing errors. We were throwing behind people and we never throw behind runners."
Blue Eye broke the deadlock in the sixth inning with a three-run burst and added a run in the seventh to go up 9-5. But the Tigers sent eight batters to the plate in the bottom of the seventh before coming up 90 feet short of knotting the score.
Coffey said the Tigers did a good job of being patient at the plate in their final at bat.
"We came to the plate taking a strike before we swung," he said. "And it worked to our advantage. We went 2-0 and 3-0 in almost every count. And good things happen when we work ahead in the count."
Good things did happen as the Tigers drew three walks and pounded out a pair of hits to keep runners on base. Green Forest had runners at first and third with two out when a base hit to right by Anderson plated one run. But Coffey held the runner from first, Carl Roberts, at third base. Anderson worked the count to 2-1 before the gap single that would have scored both runners from second and third. But a freshman runner at first base sealed Coffey's decision to not attempt a steal.
"The guy at first is a freshman," Coffey said of the situation. "I don't want him stealing and making the last out at second base and him thinking he lost the game for us. It's one of those psyche things."
Jordyn Mullins paced the Tigers at the plate with a single, double and triple. He drove in two and scored once. Taylor collected two hits, including a double, and drove in a pair. Gavin Nelson doubled, drove in one and scored once. Ewing singled and scored, and Clayton Watson singled twice, stole two bases and scored twice.
Coffey said the Tigers will take the rest of the week off before returning to action Monday at home against Valley Springs.
"They are taking the rest of the time off," he said. "They need a vacation. So I am giving them their Spring Break. It's going to be cold the rest of the week and there is nothing good that comes out of going inside."