Tigers rally past Galena
Blake Murray and Hunter Simpson combined to pitch four-hit ball and Haden Keller delivered a key two-run single on Saturday to help lead the Douglas High baseball team to a 7-5 Northern Division I conference victory at home against Galena.
Douglas (1-2, 2-6) scored three runs in the fifth inning and added three more runs in the sixth to rally back from a 5-1 deficit and snap a six-game losing streak.
Murray started on the mound and worked four innings at Tiger Field. Galena scored twice in the top of the fifth to extend its lead to 5-1, but Simpson closed out the game to earn credit for his second win of the season.
Keller had two hits and drove in four runs.
The win came as a big boost for the Tigers after dropping a 14-4 decision at home Thursday against Damonte Ranch. Haydn Brown drove in two runs with a triple to highlight a four-run first inning and the Tigers supported pitcher Isaiah Schat with ground ball double plays in the first and second innings.
As it turned out, the early momentum wasn’t enough to stave off the defending Northern Division I conference champion Mustangs, who took charge with five runs in the third inning and seven more runs in the fourth.
Douglas took its 4-0 lead after Haden Keller and Tomas Leitenbauer singled to lead off the first inning. Spencer Trivitt drove in one run when he hit a slow roller past the mound for an infield single. After a groundout, Brown slammed his triple into the right-center field gap and Logan Fencl followed with a sacrifice fly.
Meanwhile, Schat received defensive help in the first inning when Brown fielded a grounder at first base, stepped on the bag for one out and then threw a strike to Jayden Foster for a 3-6 double play. Then, after Damonte Ranch put two runners aboard on an infield hit and walk in the second inning, Fencl fielded a ground ball at third base, stepped on the bag for a force out and threw across the diamond to Brown, who came up with a big stretch to complete the inning-ending double play.
The Tigers weren’t so fortunate over the next three innings, however, as Damonte Ranch capitalized on 10 hits, eight walks and two hit batsmen. Zack Lee hit a two-run single through the hole at shortstop to put the Mustangs on top, 5-4. Damonte Ranch broke the game open with seven runs on just three hits in the fourth. A hit batsman and two walks loaded the bases for sophomore Zack Jensen, who hit a bases clearing drive into the right-center field gap for a double that pushed the score to 8-4.
The Tigers only managed one more hit — a Trevor Tierney single in the fourth — and three base runners overall over the final four innings against Tyler Oscarson, who was a second-team all-conference pitcher last year.