WHEELING - After sweeping a pair of games in Thursday's opening round of the Beast of The East Tournament, Wheeling Post 1 had little go its way Friday. But Fortunately their bad luck translated into just one loss and a no-decision.
Post 1 battled through three scoreless frames with the powerful Maryland Monarchs in its morning game, even taking a 1-0 lead to the bottom of the fourth before watching the Maryland come to life and record a 5-2 victory at the J.B. Chambers' I-470 Sports Complex.
Manager Ricky Szeligo's squad again led 1-0 in its afternoon contest, but with two out in the top of the fifth heavy rains rolled in, making the field unplayable and umpires ruled the game against the CNY Thunder a no-contest. Pitcher Nick Naumann was working on a one-hitter and had faced two over the minimum when the game was called.
Photo by Jim Elliott
Wheeling second baseman Colton Coss puts a tag on CNY Thunder Nationals base runner Rick Sisto during their game Friday at the I-470 Complex.
In the opener, Jesse Hartly singled leading off the fourth for Post 1 (16-11), which dropped to 2-1 in the tournament, and eventually scored on a Colten Coss single to make it 1-0.
But the Monarchs answered quickly, knotted the count on Cody Biddle's run-scoring base hit and taking the lead for good a couple batters later on Tim Fallon's base hit. Maryland added two more in the bottom of the fifth with a Isaiah Pasteur run-producing triple and Jon Lucindo's RBI single to follow that made it a 4-1 count.
A single, wild pitch and error helped Wheeling cut the deficit in half in the sixth before Herb Trice's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the sixth added insurance.
Koby Overstreet and Ryan Callahan, who started the fifth, combined on the six-hitter with 10 strikeouts and four walks. Matthew Brooks pitched well, but took the loss with Jameson Murray coming on in relief.
"They put some hits together at the right time and we failed to do that," Szeligo saidd. "But we played tough the whole way and was right there in the end. Matthew Brooks and Jameson Murray did a great job pitching for us.
"The biggest thing was the fact we had a few chances that we just did execute or take advantage of and that came back to haunt us in the end. Overall, I think we are set up pretty good on pitching the rest of the tournament and I have a lot of confidence in that.
"We are just going to have to string some hits together when we need them to continue to be successful."
Andrew Kovalo's RBI single to score Russell Schwertfeger in the top of the third has staked Post 1 and Naumann to the lead in the second game, however, Mother Nature had other ideas and Wheeling just wasn't able to get enough innings in for the game to count.