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Tuesday, Sep. 16, 2014

Chaffee withstands late Squirrels rally for 5-4 win

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

(Photo)
Charleston catcher Ryan Fortner tries to apply a late tag as Chaffee runner Nathan Holland scores on a base hit Monday at Harmon Field in Chaffee. Brent Shipman, Staff
CHAFFEE -- After doing all their damage in the first two innings, the Chaffee Honey Badgers survived a late push by the Charleston Fight Squirrels on Monday for a 5-4 win in the first game of a scheduled doubleheader.

"A win is a win, but they kind of coasted after the second inning," Chaffee head coach Aaron Horrell said of his team. "We came out and continued with the hot hitting (early on).

"I think we had three hits for three runs in the first and in the second inning we got a couple more. We coasted after that and it about came back and got us."

As Horrell said, the Honey Badgers came out swinging and collected five hits through the first two frames to take a 5-1 lead heading into the top of third.

From the third inning on, however, Chaffee collected only one hit and a walk, allowing the Squirrels to play catch up.

Though they wouldn't get their first hit of the contest until the sixth, Charleston took advantage of a couple of walks and Honey Badger miscues in the fourth to close to within a couple runs.

Brad Potts started the rally with a walk, followed by an infield error to put runners on first and third. Potts came in to score on a passed ball before a sacrifice fly from Zac Chasteen plated Fox to make it 5-3.

After putting a pair of runners on with no outs only to strand both in the sixth, the Squirrels came out in the seventh and made one last stand. Mack Marcum opened the frame getting hit with a pitch before a walk and passed ball left the tying run on second with two outs.

Bringing his team to within a run, Brad Potts hit a slow rolling single to third that, when overthrown to first, left the tying and go-ahead runners at third and second respectively.

Before Charleston could knot things up, a grounder to short ended their comeback bid.

"Once again we messed it up early," Charleston head coach Michael Minner said. "That's what I just told the guys, we gave it away early. We only had (two) hits and when you only get (two) hits you can't expect to win. We had a chance and just couldn't get it done."

Picking up the win, Honey Badgers' starter Andrew Dooley went 5 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on one hit and four walks while striking out six. Despite allowing three runs he had a no-hit-bid going through five innings that wasn't broken when Tim Fox lined a single to left in the fifth.

"He didn't do as well throwing strikes as I like, but he fought threw it and battled," Horrell said. "That's a testament to his mentality, battling out there. He didn't have his bests tuff, but he fought for us."

Dooley was replaced by Jesse Shelton after getting the first out in the sixth. Shelton gave up one run on a hit and a walk while striking out two.

A victim of some several fielding errors by the Squirrels, Charleston starter Chasteen took the loss. He allowed all five Chaffee runs on six hits in 5 1/3 inning work, walking one and fanning five.

"I thought he did a tremendous job," Minner said of Chasteen. "That's his longest outing of the year. We got him to 91 pitches and he was still strong. I took him out and he told me, 'you're killing me.'

"I want him to want the baseball right there, but we're also trying to take care of his arm."

In the Honey Badger's six-hit effort, Christian Cavaness and Cole Hanna both had a pair of hits, including a double by Hanna. Cody Payne and James Dickerson each added a single to Chaffee's cause.

For the Squirrels, Potts and Tim Fox each had a hit. Besides his seventh inning single, Potts also walked three times to reach base in all four plate appearances.

In the night's second contest the Honey Badgers made it a clean sweep. Riding a complete game one-hitter from Dickerson, Chaffee shut out Charleston 2-0.

Dickerson retired the Squirrels on order after the first inning, collecting seven strikeouts. He also contributed a solo home run with the Honey Badgers other run coming on a squeeze by Payne.

Chaffee now stand at 16-3 on the season with Charleston dropping just under the .500 mark at 14-15.

Charleston 010 200 1 - 4 2 4

Chaffee 320 000 x - 5 6 3

WP -- Andrew Dooley. LP -- Zac Chasteen. SV -- Jesse Shelton. Multiple hitters: (CF) Christian Cavaness 2-3, Cole Hanna 2-2. 2B -- (CF) Hanna.