Seven-Run Eighth Completes Stockade Comeback 9-6 Victory
A night after giving up three-runs in the ninth inning to fall to the Texas AirHogs 6-5, the Salina Stockade mounted their own rally to comeback from a 6-2 deficit to win 9-6. The victory came from a seven-run eighth inning that was aided by several Texas miscues, including two-walks, two-wild pitches, two-errors, and a dropped third strike that allowed a batter to reach.
The AirHogs took the lead in the bottom of the second against Troy Mannebach. Jake Taylor doubled with one out. Two batters later, Beamer Weems hit his sixth homer of the season to put Texas up 2-0.
Two innings later the lead became three. Mannebach retired the first two batters of the innings, but Weems struck again. On a 2-2 pitch, he drilled his seventh homer of the year and second of the game over the left-center field wall to make it 3-0.
Scott Firth was brilliant for Texas through the first five innings. He allowed just two-hits through the first five-frames and really had the Salina batters off-balance. In the sixth, the Stockade would finally get on the scoreboard. Roche Woodard walked to start the inning and moved to third when Jordan Caillouet doubled into left field. Kewby Meyer grounded out to bring Woodard home for the Stockade’s first run of the game. With a runner at third, Cody Coffman grounded out to bring home Caillouet to make it 3-2.
The Texas AirHogs responded with two-runs of their own in the bottom of the sixth. Tom Fazzini took over for Salina and was greeted by a drive to the wall in center that Ryne Willard legged out for a triple. Next up was Weems, who doubled down the line in left to easily score Willard. Michael Miller walked before Trevor Sealey bunted to move both runners into scoring position. Lance Fairchild relieved and gave up a sacrifice fly that brought home Weems to make it 5-2.
In the bottom of the seventh, the AirHogs extended their lead to four. Casio Grider singled to start the frame and he moved to second on a balk. After Grider stole his 26th base of the season, he scored on a ground out to make it 6-2.
Chris Colton took over in the seventh and tossed a perfect inning but, in the eighth, things went terribly wrong for him. He retired the first two batters of the inning, but the third proved to be completely elusive. Meyer singled to start the frame and he moved to third on a double by Coffman. Jimmy Heck walked to load the bases before Nick Vehlewald reached on an error that scored Meyer to cut the deficit to three. Javion Randle tied the score when he drilled an 0-2 pitch to the wall in left that he legged out for a triple. All three runners scored to tie the score at six. A wild pitch brought home Randle and the Salina Stockade had their first lead of the game. Aaron Olivas then reached on a single and moved to second on an error and that would be it for Colton.
Jacob Morris took over but the defense continued to let him down. Fernando Garza struck out, but the ball got away and he reached on the dropped third strike. A wild pitch brought home Olivas before Woodard walked. With runners at first and third, the Stockade went for the delayed steal. Woodard took off for second. When the throw went to the bag, Garza broke for home and scored. That made it 9-6.
Lance Fairchild earned his first victory of the year. Chris Cummins tossed 2-scoreless innings for his first save of the season. Jordan Caillouet and Kewby Meyer were both 2-5 with a run. Javion Randle drove in 3. Beamer Weems had a huge day for Texas, going 3-4 with 3-runs, 2-homers, and 4-RBI.
By Robert Pannier