TAHLEQUAH – The Tahlequah Tigers jumped out to 5-1 lead over Fort Gibson Tuesday afternoon at Phoenix Park, but a seven-run sixth inning by the visitors resulted in an 8-5 Tahlequah loss.

Coach Bret Hamby’s Tigers (1-1) were looking to improve to 2-0 on the season, and looked good early.

Picking up where they left off in the power game from last Saturday, the Tigers took a 1-0 lead in the home half of the second on a home run by Jared Killer.

Fort Gibson tied the game with a run in the top of the third off of starter Jacob Etzkorn, but the Orange and White Tigers quickly reclaimed the lead.

Jeremy Hamby banged out a single and Jayce “Spider” Miller blasted a home run over the wall in right center field to give Tahlequah a 3-1 lead.

The Tigers used the long ball again in the fourth to up their lead to 5-1.

Freshman right fielder Wes Newman reached on a double and Killer went yard for the second time in as many at bats, this time with a blast over the left field fence.

Etzkorn pitched well for one more inning but Fort Gibson would rally in the sixth. Left-hander Robert Lamons came on in relief of Etzkorn and took the loss. Bret Wilmon also saw action on the mound in the sixth, ending the Fort Gibson scoring spree and pitching a perfect seventh inning to give Tahlequah a chance to come back, but Fort Gibson nailed down the win.

“I think Etzkorn just got tired,” said Hamby. “His heart didn’t get tired but his body did. Once the flood gates opened up for Fort Gibson we just had a hard time getting things under control.”

Miller led the Tahlequah offense going 3-4 with 2 rbi. Newman was 2-4, Killer 2-2 with 3 rbi and Jeremy Hamby 1-3.

"I think we kind of got comfortable with the lead and started trying to hit the ball out of the park instead of just trying to get hits. We popped up to many times. Outside of the hits we only had two balls hit on the ground and struck out nine times. That’s baseball though, we will be ok.” said Hamby. “I’m not disappointed. We threw well enough to win but just couldn’t score enough. I really like the chemistry of this bunch, there's a lot of enthusiasm and encouragment in the dugout.”

Tahlequah will hit the road for the first time this season when they travel to Tulsa to take on the Bishop Kelley Comets this afternoon.

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