Tigers have disappointing one win, one loss
A split against Wooster wasn’t exactly what coach Lars Baker and the Douglas High School baseball team had in mind when it came to the home openers Saturday.
The Tigers looked good early, but not so good late in its doubleheader and had to settle for a rather disappointing one win, one loss start in their home park. Douglas scored five runs in the first inning of game one and salvaged a 6-5 victory, but it gave up six runs in the third inning of game two and were never in an 8-3 loss.
Douglas’ performance in the first inning of game one is a preview of what fans should expect from this talented team.
Starting pitcher Trent Tholen did his job in the top half of the inning and then turned it over to the big boppers. Leadoff hitter Brady Ovard reached base when he was hit by a pitch from Wooster’s Jeff King. He scored on a one-out double by Bruce Jacobsen.
Marc Garcia followed with a monster two-run home run. Then, the Tigers got it going again.
Beau Kruger followed with a single. Matt Tretton later came up with a two-out single. Kruger scored on Kenny Nicoll’s single and Tretton scored on Steve O’Brien’s single as the Tigers jumped out to a 5-0 lead.
The Tiger offense clicked as anticipated in the opening frame. Ovard got on board, the meat of the order hit the ball hard, and the end of the order hit for percentage.
However, the Douglas bats went silent over the next three innings and Wooster battled back. The Colts posted three runs in the top of the fourth inning to draw even.
Tholen struck out Nick Johnson to open the fourth, but then issued back-to-back walks. Justin Ray came on in relief, but he immediately gave up a single to Tony Biale.
Ray looked like he was going to preserve Douglas’ 5-2 lead after he struck out Rober Stahlke for the second out, but he gave up a bases-clearing double to clean-up hitter Travis Backlund.
Ray was solid down the stretch, however, giving up just one hit and striking out the side in the sixth over the last three innings.
Douglas scored what would prove to be the game-winning run in the fifth.
Tom Joyner drew a full-count walk to start the rally. T.J. Bond, running for Joyner, then scored on a triple off the base of the fence in right-center field by Tretton. The Tigers, however, failed to push an insurance run across the plate as Nicoll and O’Brien grounded out sharply to short and Ovard struck out.
Wooster mounted a rally in the seventh.
Stahlke opened with a single and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Ray got Backlund to fly to center for the first out, and Bond threw out Stahlke trying to steal third for the second out.
But, the Tigers didn’t end it easily. Tim Clark and King reached on consecutive errors and then advanced to third and second, respectively, on a delayed double steal.
Wooster’s steal plan worked to perfection, although it shouldn’t have. King got in a rundown between first and second, trying to draw a throw and let Clark scored from third before he was tagged for the final out. The Tiger infielders played the situation well and threw back to third when Clark ventured too far down the line.
Clark was dead on the tag back at the base, but ruled safe. King, the potential go-ahead run, took second.
The Tigers got out of it for good when Ray served up a ground out to short by Dusty McDowell.
Wooster scored six runs on three hits, three walks and three wild pitches in the third inning of game two and cruised to an easy win.
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