Tahlequah Daily Press

Sports

May 5, 2013

Tigers fall short of regional crown

(Continued)

Tigers stay alive in regional play

When a season is a stake, a tripleheader is not that daunting for the Tahlequah Tigers baseball team.

With Thursday’s game against Tulsa Memorial suspended due to rain, the Tigers had to play three Friday to extend their season, starting with an 11 a.m. continuation of their opening game.

Despite holding Memorial to only one hit Friday morning, that hit, coupled with a two-out throwing error by second baseman Ben Stacey in the bottom of the seventh, was enough to give the Chargers a 2-1 win.

With the loss, the Tigers had to turn around and play Tulsa Nathan Hale 30 minutes later in an elimination game.

“It’s clichéd, but we had to find a way to put it behind us and take it one game at a time, even though it wasn’t easy,” coach Nick Zodrow said. “We had to do it and with the senior leadership helping us out, we found a way to make it happen.”

That “way” was a 13-1 run rule win over the Rangers.

After scoring one run in the bottom of the second off of a Ryan Sanders single, the Tigers blew the game open by batting around in both the third and fourth innings. Among the six extra base hits pounded out by the Tigers during the rout was an inside-the-park home run by Colby Brittain, assisted in part by a steep hill in center field. Brittain also had one of the Tigers’ three stolen bases.

Despite having a 12-man roster, the Rangers were forced to use three different pitchers in an effort to stem the onslaught.

With the win over Tulsa Nathan Hale (7-15), the Tigers earned a rematch with No. 8 Tulsa Memorial Friday evening after the Chargers dropped a game to Coweta. The Tigers avenged the loss from the morning session to eliminate Tulsa Memorial (19- 15) and bring on another potential doubleheader.            

“Our backs are against the wall and we’re just playing for survival,” Zodrow said.

----

Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton, Press special writer, contributed to this report.

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