04/09/10 — Base-running error critical for Wayne Christian

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Base-running error critical for Wayne Christian

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on April 9, 2010 1:47 PM

A failure to touch home plate not only cost Wayne Christian three runs, it likely cost it a victory.

A key base running mistake came back to haunt the Eagles in a 7-6 loss to Greenfield on Thursday in the opening game of the Charger Diamond Classic at Wayne Country Day.

An Eagles' baserunner failed touch home following Dylan Smith's would-be grand-slam in the top of the sixth inning. As a result, Smith's home run turned into an RBI single and Wayne Christian went from leading 9-7 to trailing 7-6.

"That's just inexperience and a kid that's never played baseball," said Eagles' head coach Greg Johnson. "It was just a miscue from the standpoint of inexperience."

Greenfield led 7-2 entering the sixth inning before Stephen Gallagher's two-run home run to right field pulled Wayne Christian to within 7-4. Travis Thomas' RBI single cut the margin to 7-5 before Smith's grand slam and the ensuing controversy.

Dillon Alvarez's two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth gave the Knights a 7-2 advantage.

The Eagles left a pair of runners on base in the top of the fifth with a chance to slice into a 5-2 deficit.

Greenfield picked up a pair of runs in the home half of the fourth and a run on Sam Kirk's inside-the-park home run in the bottom of the third.

Smith's solo home run to right field gave Wayne Christian a 2-1 lead in the top of the third. Luke Howell's solo homer gave the Eagles a 1-0 advantage in the top of the first.

Kirk pitched a complete game, allowing six earned runs on 10 hits with two walks and 10 strikeouts to earn the win on the mound.

"I think he got a little erratic toward the end and our guys started picking him up a little better," said Johnson. "But, he seemed to settle down there in the middle of the game."

Wayne Christian faces Wayne Country Day at 1 p.m. today.