(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
CHARLESTON -- With the game-winning hit coming courtesy of Jonathan Boone, the Charleston Squirrels rallied back from an early four-run deficit on Monday to beat the Chaffee Squids 9-6 in the first game of a doubleheader.
Tied 6-6 in the bottom of the sixth with runners on second and third with no outs, Boone hit a line drive that just cleared a leaping Conner Scott at third base allowing Ethan Browning to score from third for the deciding run.
"It took a squirrel hop," Charleston coach Michael Minner said of Boone's hit. "Some things haven't been going our way and fortunately the ball takes a good hop for us and we get the winning run in there. Then we shut the door tacking on a few more."
In the next at bat, Nathan Rodgers gave the Squirrels some added insurance when, after fouling off several Chaffee offerings, he hit a shot to deep right field. Bouncing back to the wall, Rodgers' shot easily scored Bobby Clark and Boone from third and second respectively to make up the 9-6 final.
"What a great at bat by Nathan Rodgers to tack on two insurance runs," said Minner. "He fouls off about three or four dirty off-speed pitches in the dirt and then gets a straight pitch and whacks one off the wall.
"That's just an incredible at bat."
The three-run rally helped Charleston overcome what was a deep early hole as Chaffee started the game with a triple from lead off hitter Scott Foster before going on to score four runs in the first inning.
In the frame, Trevor Cannon, Nolan Urhahn and Scott all collected a hit while batting in a run.
After stranding four base runners in the first two innings, however, the Squirrels mounted a comeback in the bottom of the third, scoring five runs all with two outs already on the board.
"I got hit in the hand and Bobby got a single up the middle right before," Nathan Rodgers said. "That just opened up the inning and you see what we can do with the sticks in our lineup."
Starting with a sacrifice fly to center field from Boone to score Charleston's first run, Charleston's Seth Childers then hit a two-run double to left field before Brandon Peters scored the tying run
Giving his team the momentary lead, Bryan Freed capped the rally with an infield single up the third base side scoring a runner from third to put Charleston up 5-4.
"The plan going in was to start Josh Overbey (on the mound) and try to keep it close after four innings and then go to Andrew Dooley and hopefully we could win a close game," Chaffee coach Aaron Horrell said. "But the third inning kind of got away from us. I don't have much to say about how it happened, but we just didn't make some plays defensively today."
On the game, Charleston outhit Chaffee 11-10 with Freed leading the way going 3 for 4 with three singles and a run batted in. For Chaffee, Scott went 3 for 3 with a pair of doubles while scoring once and driving in two runs.
Urhahn and Alex Davie each had a pair of hits while driving in a run for the Squids' cause.
Picking up the win, Peters pitched six innings for Charleston allowing all six runs on 10 hits and a walk while striking out nine. After a rough first inning, Peters gave up only two more runs, one in the fourth and one in the sixth, and struck out the side in the top of the third.
Coming in for the final inning, Boone picked up the save striking out the first two batters he faced before inducing a pop up to the second baseman to close out the game.
Splitting the doubleheader, Chaffee came out in the second game and once again scored four runs in the first, only this time they held on for a 12-1 win in five innings on the mercy rule.
Davie picked up the win going 4 2/3 innings and surrendered the Squirrels' only run in the fifth.
Keasler and Scott both had three hits in the Squids' win with Foster and Davie contributing a pair of hits each.
Chaffee now stands at 19-2 on the season while Charleston is 7-9.
|Chaffee||400 101 0 - 6|
|Charleston||005 013 x - 9|
WP -- Brandon Peters. LP -- Andrew Dooley. SV -- Jonathan Boone. 2B -- (CF) Connor Scott 2; (CH) Nathan Rodgers, Seth Childers. 3B -- Scott Foster.
|Chaffee||413 04 - 12|
|Charleston||000 01 - 1|
WP -- Alex Davie. LP -- Josh Boese. 2B -- (CF) Josh Overbey, Trevor Cannon.