Tahlequah Daily Press


April 9, 2013

Tigers rally late

Tahlequah comes from behind to beat Salina, snap long losing streak.

Four times Connor Mutzig made contact while up to bat against Salina. Three times the ball didn’t leave the infield — twice it didn’t have to.

He was productive, nonetheless.

His third at-bat was a sacrifice squeeze, which scored Lane Cobb, the go-ahead run in what turned out to be an 11-6 victory for Tahlequah on Monday afternoon.

“They were pretty productive AB’s for being so little,” Mutzig admitted.

He’s right.

Mutzig’s bunt to Salina pitcher Kyle Johnson in the fifth inning rolled up near the pitching mound, forcing Johnson to either throw to first for an out or look Cobb back to third base. Johnson chose to get the out at first, allowing Cobb to race home and give the Tigers the lead for good.

“He did a job of getting a sac bunt down,” Zodrow said. “With runners on first and third, we did a safety squeeze, and it worked to perfection.”

Mutzig’s other productive at-bat without getting a ball out of the infield was in the fourth frame. The senior first baseman tried to advance both Austin Riley and Stephen Wheeler up 90 feet, but instead Mutzig’s bunt got past Salina pitcher Dillon Gardner and rolled to a vacant area near where shortstop Brett Kerns should have been, allowing Mutzig to reach base safely.

That set up a three-run inning for the Tigers, pulling them even with Salina at five runs apiece after four innings were in the books.

“We knew with the wind blowing out, and their guy wasn’t going to overpower us, we just had to keep grinding away and hope somebody came up with the big hit,” said Zodrow, whose team scored all three runs in the fourth inning with two outs, courtesy of a two-run single by Houston Glad and a fly ball by Logan Lewis, which was dropped by Salina left fielder Colton Burgess.

“Then what really broke it loose was Ben Stacey’s two-out RBI hit in the second inning. We hadn’t had one of those in a long time, and it lifted the spirits in our dugout. It kind of relaxed everybody.”

Early on, Class 3A No. 5 Salina (11-7) looked like it was going to be on cruise control en route to snapping a brief two-game losing streak.

The Wildcats tallied one run apiece in the first and second innings before posting a two-spot in the third inning. Bret Fite and Jake Tolbert were Salina’s offensive catalysts during the early stages, both recording two RBIs in the first handful of innings.

Combined, Fite and Tolbert went 4 for 7 with four runs batted in. Salina finished with 10 hits, however only two came after the fourth inning.

That’s when Tahlequah took over.

The Tigers went on a late-game scoring binge, scoring five runs in the sixth inning to put the game away. The deciding blow came on Mutzig’s two-run single to center field.

“He didn’t hit that ball hard, but it fell in for him,” Zodrow said of Mutzig, who finished the game 2 for 3 with three runs driven in.

Once Tahlequah caught up and took the lead, it rode the right arm of Glad, who tossed the final three innings to pick up the victory. He only gave up two hits (both in the seventh inning) while issuing one run (unearned) to go along with four strikeouts and one walk.

“We hadn’t played in a week, so I was just trying to get those guys innings,” Zodrow said of Glad, who came on in relief of Wheeler, who gave up five runs (four earned) on eight hits in four innings of work. “Houston is tough no matter who it’s against. He’s a handful.”

The victory for Tahlequah snapped a five-game losing streak, which dated back to March 19 in the Aggie Classic in Pensacola, Fla.

“We did a lot of the little things right,” Zodrow said. “We took extra bases on balls in the dirt, and we got RBI hits with two outs. A couple of things started going our way. It was one of the few games where we played the game right.”

Mutzig said it was a matter of getting offensive production.

“I feel like our bats are coming together more,” said Mutzig, whose team will take on Salina Friday on the road.

Text Only
  • James_Ethan-(12)-vs.#2CC63C.jpg Back on the line

    RiverHawks’ Ethan James returns to the line healthy and ready for 2014

    RiverHawks offensive lineman Ethan James will enter the 2014 season healthy – something the team, and James, were not in 2013.

    July 25, 2014 2 Photos

  • Sooners shifting several positions

    Experience comes from encountering the same things in the same ways over and over again. Oklahoma’s Geneo Grissom and Julian Wilson have that at defensive end and nickleback in bunches.
    However, both will be seeing new things when practice begins. Grissom is moving to outside linebacker. Wilson will be getting a look at cornerback as his senior season begins

    July 25, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Better police needed for college teams enticed to cheat

    The NCAA once cracked down on colleges that went too far luring top prospects, then it targeted teams that lathered players with special treatment. That was until the NCAA's get-tough approach backfired, rendering it ineffective and creating an opportunity for those who want to play dirty.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • BobBowlsby.jpg Media Week: Change is coming

    Changes are coming to college athletics.
    That was the theme of the state of the conference speech by Big 12 Conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby on the first day of Big 12 Football Media Days.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Peterson.jpg Cowboy quandary: OSU defense trying to replace seven starters

    A year after the best defensive team in the Mike Gundy era, the questions now surround how those few returning starters and second-year defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer can maintain that high level of efficiency.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Really one true champion?

    I decided to spare the colleagues in front of me – and myself from making a scene – by holding back flipping my table at the Big 12 Conference Football Media Days in Dallas.
    I had become exhausted by the constant use and misrepresentation by the Big 12 with their moniker of “One True Champion.” If they are going to live with the slogan, then they need to abide by that slogan.
    Perhaps its a simple case that they are keeping constant with the poor math of the 10-team Big 12 Conference.

    July 23, 2014

  • Hill expected to be used in multiple facets

    The picture became a little clearer recently of how Big 12 Conference Newcomer of the Year Tyreek Hill will be utilized in the Oklahoma State offense.
    And the picture is rather wide.

    July 23, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Expectations too high for a rehabbing Woods

    Tiger Woods finished near bottom last weekend at Royal Liverpool, drawing out his drought of major tournament wins. Despite the disappointing showing, Woods' return to form remains a matter of when, not if.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • shock pic.jpg Time to rest

    Shock beats San Antonio before entering All-Star break

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • McIlroy leads, Tiger Woods in contention after 1st day at British Open

    July 18, 2014


Do you believe school administrators and college presidents in Oklahoma are paid too much?

Strongly agree.
Somewhat agree.
Somewhat disagree.
Strongly disagree.
     View Results
Press Sports Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive