Straughn hands Eagles sixth loss of the year

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 25, 2001

Sports Writer

GOSHEN – Brock Bracewell pitched a complete game five hitter and helped his own cause at the plate with a three hit performance as the Straughn High School Tigers defeated the Goshen High School Eagles 6-1 in an important 2A area game at Eagle Field late Thursday afternoon.

With the loss, the Eagles (1-6, 0-2 in area play) saw their slim chances of winning the area championship fade away into the sunset. In addition, the Eagles five year streak of making the state baseball playoffs is in severe jeopardy during a season plagued so far by inexperience, lack of practice time due to the rainy March weather and many players joining the team late due to the basketball team while making it to the Final Four in Birmingham last month.

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In the top of the second with the game still scoreless, the Tigers (6-0, 3-0 in area play) appeared they were going to waste a scoring opportunity as the bases remained loaded with two outs as Goshen pitcher Wesley Wright got a key second strikeout. However, Wright was the victim of a bad break as Justin Clark slapped an in between hopper into right center field for a two RBI single bringing in Ray Bozeman and Chris Watts to give Straughn a 2-0 lead.

The score remained that way until the top of the fourth when the Tigers tacked on another run when Bracewell drove in Josh Coleman with a one out single extending the Straughn lead to 3-0.

The Eagles got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth scoring one run when Brandon Nickolson’s RBI sacrifice fly drove in Brandon Penny from third. However, on the same play, the inning ended abruptly when Straughn catcher Casey Waite gunned down the runner at second after Penny crossed home plate for a double play to end the inning.

In the top of the sixth with the Eagles trailing only 3-1 with two outs, Wright was cruising along until Bracewell singled, went to third on a hit by Clark and

scored on a two RBI single by Jeffery Odom which put the game away.

Despite being plagued by bad luck and another anemic offensive outing by the Eagles, Wright pitched 6 1/3 innings allowing six runs and 10 hits while walking four and striking out 12 batters.

On the other hand, Bracewell used outstanding control and he stayed ahead of Goshen batters all day long walking two and striking out four to earn the win. Bracewell forced the Eagles to hit into nine ground ball outs on the afternoon.

Offensively, Chad Sanders, Brandon Walters and Michael Hatten each had one hit in a losing cause for the Eagles.