STEUBENVILLE - Unearned runs proved costly for Indian Creek Tuesday at Vacarro Field.
Cambridge knotted the score via a wild pitch in the fifth and got the game winner thanks to a Redskins fielding miscue in recording a 5-4 eight-inning Division II East Sectional victory.
After five of its batters were erased by strikes in the first two frames, Creek got its offense going in the third after two outs.
SEASON ENDS — Indian Creek’s Aaron Crawford delivers a pitch during Tuesday’s sectional tournament game at Vaccaro Field. The Redskind dropped a 5-4 decision to Cambridge in eight innings.
Dylan Whitaker worked Cambridge starter Caleb Tingle for a walk. Sean Smith also drew a free pass before Tanner Wise dropped a single down the third base line (his hit was the first of the game for the Redskins) to plate Whitaker. Cole Yeater's bloop fell in left center, allowing both Smith and Wise to scamper home.
Yeater, who advanced to third on Adam Freshwater's single, touched home via a wild pitch.
The Bobcats responded with a pair in the home half of the frame. Tingle and Terry Neff both recorded RBI. Cambridge, now 6-15, tied it in the fifth on Kohl Taylor's run-scoring single and the wild pitch.
Cambridge 5, Indian Creek 4
Indian Creek 004 000 00 - 4 5 1
Cambridge 002 020 01 - 5 6 0
INDIAN CREEK (5-16): Crawford (3BB, 3K, 1 HBP) Yeater (5, LP, 5BB, 1K, 1 HBP) and Yeater, A. Freshwater (5); Yeater D, S, 2RBI; Wise S, RBI; A. Freshwater S; M. Freshwater S.
CAMBRIDGE (6-15): Tingle (5BB, 6K) Neff (3, WP, 2BB, 9K, 1 HBP) and Charlton. Wilkinson S; Orr S; Tingle RBI; Neff S, RBI; Taylor S, RBI; Cline S; Ford S.
The game winner, which came with two outs, was set up by a pair of walks and the Redskins error.
"We played good defense all the way up until that play in the eighth," said veteran Creek skipper Mike Cottis. "But like I told the kids, we should have never been in that spot. We left too many guys on base and we struck out way too many times. The bottom line is the game was lost at the plate."
The Redskins, who stand at 5-16 and may play a few makeup games, stranded three in the third when they sent 10 batters to the plate. They also left two on in the fourth and one each in the sixth and seventh.
Tingle, who worked 2 innings, mowed down six Redskins on strikes. Neff took over and recorded nine punch-outs the rest of the way. Neff allowed just two hits during his five and a third frames of works.
Aaron Crawford started on the bump for Creek, giving way to Yeater in the fifth. Crawford was nicked for five hits while Yeater surrendered just one, Taylor's base knock in the fifth.
"This loss had nothing to do with the defense and nothing to do with the outings we received from Aaron and Cole," Cottis noted. "They both threw well. And, both of their guys threw well. If you don't hit the ball, you can't win the game."
Creek got a lead-off single from Mike Freshwater in the sixth but Neff proceeded to fan the side. In the seventh, Yeater just missed depositing one over the fence in left center. He settled for a double but was unable to advance.
Cambridge will return to Vacarro Field Thursday for a lower bracket semifinal match with the second-seeded Edison Wildcats. That first pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.
Following the game, Cottis took time to salute his four seniors (Wise, Jonathan Woodbury, A. Freshwater and Liam Campbell).
"They gave me everything they had day in and day out," Cottis commented. "They are great kids and we definitely will miss them. I hate to graduate kids, especially good ones.
"Some of our seniors got to play every day and some were role players. All of them accepted their roles and played with pride."