|Errors haunt Wildcats in loss to Midlothian|
|Joseph Elerson | News-Telegram Sports Writer|
March 19, 2005 -CORSICANA - The errors came back to haunt the Sulphur Springs Wildcats in the winner's bracket of the Corsicana Booster Club Classic Friday night at Price Field.
SSHS (8-5) committed six errors and lost to the Midlothian Panthers, 5-2, and were scheduled to face the Terrell Tigers in the third place game today at 12:30 p.m.
"We didn't play good enough defense to get the job done. Zach (Adair) pitched a great game for us, and we didn't make the plays behind him," SSHS head coach Rahn Smith said. "It is just frustrating because in most of our losses this season, we just lost those games, and I feel like that is what we did tonight."
With their final pre-district game scheduled for Tuesday night at home against West Mesquite before the start of District 12-4A play against Paris on Thursday, Smith said the team chemistry is not where it needs to be at this point in the season.
"We are not really a team right now and are playing like a bunch of individual players and we are not supporting each other the way that we need too," the coach said. "We have a lot of ability and I feel like we can go deep in the district."
Sulphur Springs once again jumped out early in the top of the first as junior Josh Riley smacked an RBI double off of Midlothian starter Billy Shoemaker for a 1-0 lead.
But Midlothian found a way to take the lead in the bottom of the second inning.
Midlothian scored two runs off Adair as Alex Croft sent Richard Plasket in to tie the game and then Croft scored from first on a SSHS error to take a 2-1 lead.
In the top of the third inning, SSHS stormed back to tie the game at 2-2 when Tyler Rhoades smacked a double off Shoemaker and then Mills got on first on a throwing error by Justin Neef that scored Rhoades.
Mills had a stolen base during Jake Broumley's at-bat, but sprained his thumb and sat out for the remainder of the game.
"Having Colby out of the lineup right now hurts us because he is like the catalyst in the leadoff position because he can play in the outfield and play some short and now it is going to hurt us to bring Casey (McMahan) in for relief with only one shortstop," Smith said.
With two on and no outs in the bottom of the third inning, McMahan made the play of the season to get Adair out of the inning as the Wildcats pulled off a triple play.
Midlothian's Cody Andrus nailed a line-drive right to a diving McMahan at shortstop, who flipped the ball over to Riley for the second out and then Kason Scroggins took the relay throw to get Stefan Dickinson out at first.
Midlothian, though, took control of the game in the fifth and sixth innings scoring three runs off Adair starting with an RBI sacrifice fly from Mikey Horn for a 3-2 lead.
Andrus gave Midlothian a 4-2 lead nailing an RBI single that sent in Dickinson, who reached first on an error.
Horn and Plasket each went 1-for-2 for the Panthers, while teammates Andrus and Croft were both 1-for-3 .
Rhoades was the SSHS leading hitter going 1-for-2 with a double and a run scored, while Mills went 1-for-3 with a double, a stolen base and a run scored.
Adair, who fell to 1-3 with the loss, went 5 2/3 innings, giving up four hits, three walks and three earned runs while striking out four.
"I am still waiting for some guys to step up and take some positions, and we have a couple of positions where they haven't done that yet and district is only a couple of games away," Smith said. "We need some guys to step up and for people to take control, and we are looking for some leaders to come out of this hopefully."