Eagles, Chargers combine for 27 runs in baseball
By Rob Craig
Published in Sports on March 16, 2007 2:40 PM
As March Madness was tipping off around the country, Wayne County saw some "madness" of its own as Rosewood and Wayne Country Day got together and put on one of the wildest innings of baseball anyone will ever see.
The second inning of Thursday afternoon's game featured a combined 15 runs with 14 hits -- including five home runs.
In the end, it was visiting Rosewood who outslugged Wayne Country Day 18-9.
"It was crazy," said Rosewood coach Josh Smith. "You're on one end of the stick and see your guys hitting the ball. You're happy because the guys are putting the ball in play, but then it flip flops. Then they start doing it and it was frustrating -- right after we get up, they get up."
Rosewood held a 1-0 lead following the first inning and pushed five runs across in the second before there was an out. Three of those runs came home on a double by Robert Franks and a subsequent Charger error.
Holt Rains then took advantage of a short porch in right field to smash the first of his two home runs to give Rosewood what appeared to be a commanding 7-0 lead.
Staring at an early seven-run deficit, WCDS didn't blink. Five of its first six batters in the bottom of the second hit singles to score three runs and make it a 7-3 game.
The Chargers then attacked Rosewood starter Taylor Allen with the long ball as Sam Steed hit a three-run homer. Ryan Ford followed him up with his second home run of the year and, not to be outdone, Travis Davis smacked his third long ball of the year to turn a 7-0 deficit into a 8-7 Charger lead.
Matt Neal then entered for Rosewood to try and stop the bleeding and got Kevin Herring for the second out. Starting pitcher Trent Langston then took his previous inning's frustrations out on the baseball as he tallied his second run-scoring hit of the inning, a solo home run to put WCDS ahead 9-7.
"That was pretty exciting," said Wayne Country Day coach Michael Taylor. "The guys didn't get down, but Rosewood didn't get down either. Our guys kept battling and took the lead, but then Rosewood battled.
"It was a positive there because we didn't give up, but then I thought we gave up."
Undaunted by the nine-run explosion, Rosewood went right back to work.
"We never gave up," said Smith. "It was early so I think they understood there was a bunch more innings to go."
The Eagles scored a run in the third inning on a RBI single by Garrett Howell and then took the lead for good with a three-run fourth inning to go up 11-9. In the inning, Rosewood was helped out courtesy of two of the Chargers seven errors in the game.
"When they hit the ball, we didn't make plays," said Taylor. "If we don't play defense, we're not going to win the ball game. That's just plain as day."
Neal (2-1) who had received a rude awakening when he first entered, kept the Charger offense at bay the rest of the afternoon. The freshman allowed one run on four hits, walked none and struck out three in 52/3 innings.
"Matt really stepped up his game," said Smith. "He put the ball where it needed to be and he allowed our boys to make plays. He's grown up a lot since our first game."
The Eagles continued to pound WCDS pitching as they would tally four more runs in the fifth and three more in the sixth inning. The game's final two runs came from Rains' second homer of the game -- a two-run shot.
Rains finished the game 3-for-5 with two bombs and three driven in.
"We've been working with (Holt) on staying back and just putting the ball in play," said Smith. "Because of his size he's going to get a lot of off-speed stuff. He really stepped up today and put the team on his back when we needed a big lift."
In the end, there were a plethora of hitting stars for both teams.
Kyle Pender was a perfect 3-for-3 with two RBIs while Ryan Ford finished 2-for-4 with a homer and Trent Langston added two hits, a home run and two RBIs for WCDS (3-1).
For Rosewood (5-1), Franks reached base five times and finished 4-for-4 with a double, three runs scored and two RBIs. Howell added three hits and Cody Richards and Allen both recorded two hits apiece for the Eagles.
"It's exciting to see our bats come alive now that conference play is coming up," Smith said. "One through nine today, we put the ball in play and I was really impressed with how everyone played."
Rosewood 161 343 0 -- 18 18 1
WCDS 090 000 0 -- 9 12 7
Leading Hitters -- Rosewood -- Robert Franks 4-4, 2B, 3 R, 2 RBI; Holt Rains 3-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 3 R; Garrett Howell 3-5, 2 RBI, 2 R; Taylor Allen 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R; Cody Richards 2-5, 2 R; David Smeltzer 1-4, 2 RBI; Goss Kendall 1-3, 3 R, RBI. WCDS -- Kyle Pender 3-3, 2 RBI; Sam Steed 1-4, HR, 3 RBI; Ryan Ford 2-4, HR; Trent Langston 2-4, HR, 2 RBI; Travis Davis 1-4, HR.
DP -- Rosewood 1, WCDS 1. LOB -- Rosewood 8, WCDS 2. SB -- Kendall. SF -- Kendall.
IP H R ER BB SO
Allen 11/3 8 8 8 1 3
Neal (W, 2-1) 52/3 4 1 1 0 3
Langston 2 7 7 7 0 4
Davis (L) 2 5 4 2 0 0
R. Ford 11/3 6 7 6 2 0
C. Ford 12/3 0 0 0 3 0
WP -- Davis, R. Ford, C. Ford. HBP -- by Davis (Franks).
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