The magic of their home field continued for the Sulphur Springs Wildcats.
Alex Burney's bunt single led to an eighth inning error which handed the Wildcats a thrilling 7-6 bi-district playoff win Saturday at Eagle Stadium.
The timely hit not only won Game 2 of the series, but handed Sulphur Springs a 2-0 sweep over Wylie East. The Wildcats won Friday 9-8 at Wylie.
The Wildcats remained undefeated at home this season.
It was the second game in recent weeks at home the Wildcats had overcome a deficit. Burney also had provided a key base hit before, did the trickSaturday with a well-placed bunt.
"Alex's bunt was good, the pitcher had to field it. All he could do is try to make a throw to third and it was wild and we won it," Jerrod Hammack, Sulphur Springs head baseball coach said of the game-winning play.
Hammack's Wildcats were still riding momentum from a late night 9-8 win in Wylie the night before. Sulphur Springs will now take the bi-district title and advance in the playoffs to meet Whitehouse at a time and location to be decided.
"We beat a heck of a team, we are fortunate," Hammack said. "We fell behind in this game 5-0, but I knew we had to sticks to come back and we did. Scoring three runs in the bottom of the seventh was huge. Then we were able to win it in the eighth. This was pretty tough on my nerves again. We don't have to always make these game so exciting."
The magic started for the Wildcats in the bottom of the fifth.
Down 5-0, the home team scratched out three runs in the fifth. "We could have played for the second game. But this team does not have that mentality," Hammack said. "We wanted to win it in the first game."
Cabo Sanvig drew a one-out walk to start the rally in the bottom of fifth. Burney and Jordan Jackson also walked to load the sacks. Hill knocked in a run with a deep fly ball to right field. Jenner Jackson, the winning pitcher, helped his own cause smoking a single to right, plating two runs to make it a 5-3 game. Kason Matthews went down on strikes. But the Wildcats were feeling much better about themselves with the lead cut to just a pair of runs.
Jenner Jackson took the energy from the rally back the mound with him. The 6-2 senior right-hander sat down Wylie East in order. striking out the side in blistering fashion, Much to the delight the home fans and his teammates.
Sulphur Springs was unable to score in the sixth and action moved to the seventh frame. The visiting Raiders pushed across a lone run to go up 6-3 heading into the final at-bat for the Wildcats.
Burney walked to open the rally. Starting Wylie East pitcher lefty Garret McCain was removed and replaced on the hill by Tyler Hughey. The change was just what the home team needed with Jordan Jackson, Cole Hill and Jenner Jackson all singling to the outfield as Sulphur Springs moved to within 6-4. Kason Matthews ripped a shot down the third base line which hopped over the glove of fielder Taylor Ellis allowing two runs to score and the game was tied. The next three Wildcats went down in order. The team had to be content with the game tied as action moved to extra innings.
Wylie East had a base runner in scoring position in the eighth. Jenner Jackson got the final two outs on strikeouts.
Jenner Jackson said, "I lost my curve for a while. Then it came back, that's how I got the strikeouts late in the game."
Sulphur Springs started the bottom of the eighth off with a bang as catcher Cabo Sanvig ripped a double to centerfield. "It was a hanging curve and I made good contact. It was a relief to get that hit," Sanvig said.
Tyler Williams was inserted to run at second for Sanvig. Burney came to the plate with the game hanging in the balance. He fouled off the first bunt attempt and then got a pitch he could handle. Burney laid down a rolling bunt between the pitcher’s mound and third base. Pitcher Hughey came off to field the base near the foul line, realizing that the speedy Burney was almost to first base, he tried to make a play at third as Williams tore down the basepaths. Hughey's off-balance flip to third sailed high and wide, Williams got up out of his slide at third and scored the winning run, racing home with Wylie East unable to field the ball to make a throw home.
Sulphur Springs took the 7-6 come back win as they remained undefeated at home.
The Wildcats players and coaches celebrated on the field in a jubilant display before the home fans. Wylie East walked off discouraged as they lost their second one-run game on a late rally by Sulphur Springs.
In the early going, the first inning scoreless. Jesse Brubaker ignited the scoring, popping a solo home run for Wylie East. The Raiders had a 1-0 lead after two frames.
The Wildcats rallied for three runs in the fifth, three more in the sixth and closed out with one run in the bottom of the eighth to take exciting win.
Jenner Jackson pitched the entire game and got the win, despite struggling with a hip injury. Jackson said, "We were playing at home and we had to do our best. Maybe this place does have some magic or pixie dust. But we haven't lost here this season and we did not want to lose to Wylie East."
Sulphur Springs plays Whitehouse in the Class 4A Region II area playoffs. Game 1 is Friday at 7 p.m. at Lindale High School; Game 2, Saturday at 1 p.m. and Game 3, if needed, to follow at the same location.
|< Prev||Next >|