GIBSONBURG – It was just the top of the second inning, but Gibsonburg baseball found itself in a six-run hole against winless Ottawa Hills and its starting pitcher had already been chased from the mound.
But the Golden Bears used a six-run third inning to propel themselves to a 16-6, six-inning Toledo Area Athletic Conference victory on Tuesday.
“I’m proud of the guys in keeping their composure, even when we were down 6-0,” Gibsonburg coach Kyle Rase said. “We did a good job getting runners on base.”
Gibsonburg (8-5 overall, 2-1 TAAC) got two runs back in the second inning but got the offense flowing in the third. Ryan Clark walked and scored on a triple by Derek Angelone.
A single by Andrew Dellinger, who came on in relief of Bryce Ernsthausen, scored Angelone. Zack Kaetzel walked and scored, along with Dellinger, on a deep triple by Ernsthausen, who finished with three hits on the day.
The Golden Bears added four runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to force a run-rule victory. Jordan Kreglow highlighted the fifth inning with a two-run double to score Bryce and Josh Ernsthausen. Kaetzel had a run-scoring double in the sixth inning before Angelone’s RBI single with the bases loaded scored Kreglow to end the game.
Angelone finished a home run shy of the cycle while adding three RBIs and two runs scored.
“We didn’t look at Ottawa Hills’ record because they’re one of those teams that play hard and are good no matter their record,” Rase said. “We knew early on we couldn’t tie the game with one swing of the bat when we were down 6-0, but we executed well the rest of the game.”
Dellinger went 3.2 innings to pick up the win. Dellinger struck out six while allowing just four hits and one run. Ernsthausen allowed just one run in the first inning but walked four consecutive batters in the second inning to end his day.
“Dellinger did a nice job in the middle innings,” Rase said. “I’m proud of Bryce though. He had a frustrating day pitching but gets three big hits for the offense. He’s a good senior leader.”
The Green Bears (0-11, 0-4) got an RBI triple from Parker Riepenhoff after a leadoff single by Dominic Adduci in the first inning. Ottawa Hills looked as if it would get a great start, but Riepenhoff was picked off by Angelone at third base. Eric Gross walked but was thrown out trying to steal second as Dan Reilly struck out.
“We had chances to increase our lead, but didn’t,” Ottawa Hills coach Chris Hardman said. “We just didn’t put the ball in play enough. We didn’t force their defense to make plays. It wasn’t pretty.”