No. 6-ranked Homer rallied late, but still fell short in a 5-2 MHSAA Division 3 state baseball quarterfinal loss to No. 7-ranked Bridgman at Bailey Park on Tuesday.
Trailing 5-1 in the bottom of the seventh inning, Homer (37-5) strung a few hits together, scored a run and had the winning run at the plate with the bases loaded and two outs.
But, Bridgman starting pitcher Braxy Wasko was able to shut the door on Homer’s comeback, picking up the win and sending the Bees to the state semifinals for the second time in three years.
“I didn’t know we had a quarterfinal team back in March, but you can never count this group out,” said Homer head coach Scott Salow. “You saw that with us bringing up the winning run at the end of the game today. We were two base hits away.”
After playing errorless baseball in the regional tournament, a couple of costly Homer errors helped Bridgman jump out to an early 5-0 lead.
“Give Bridgman a lot of credit. They forced us into uncomfortable situations with their base-running and bunting,” Salow said. “We had a couple chances to get out of innings and we just didn’t take advantage of them.”
Next season, don’t be surprised to see Homer, who won state championships in 2004 and 2006 and was state runner-up in 2005, make another playoff run as the Trojans graduate just two seniors from this year’s team.
Bridgman (26-5-1) moves on to face Madison Heights Bishop Foley (33-2-1) in the Division 3 baseball state semifinals at C.O. Brown Stadium at 2 p.m. on Friday.