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High School Baseball

Buckeye loss to Firelands leaves plenty of what-ifs

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    Firelands' Austin Urban scores on a balk in the first inning May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Josh Meyer pitches for Buckeye on May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Trevor Damron pitches for Firelands on May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Firelands' Colin Ransom hits an RBI single in the first inning during a 4-1 win over Buckeye on Monday.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Firelands' Mason Rogonzinski scores in the first inning against Buckeye on May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Buckeye's Max Wilson throws to first May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Buckeye's Ben Grega steals second base before the ball reaches FIrelands' Austin Urban in the third inning May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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    Buckeye's John Gall is called out on a close play at first base in the fourth inning May 15.

    STEVE MANHEIM / GAZETTE

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PARMA — The Buckeye baseball team knew waiting for Firelands pitcher Trevor Damron to beat himself wasn’t a viable option. After all, the left-hander signed with defending College World Series champion Coastal Carolina less than two weeks ago.

The Bucks couldn’t get a momentum-changing base hit Monday, as Damron and the Falcons survived 4-1 in the Cuyahoga Community College West Division II District semifinals at Ron Mottl Field.

Eighth-seeded Buckeye (12-15) stranded 10 runners, including the bases loaded in the third and fourth innings, and failed to score on any of Damron’s seven walks.

Fourth-seeded Firelands (17-7) advanced to play No. 2 Padua (16-9) today.

“They out-executed us,” said Bucks catcher Tyler Faught, who had two of the team’s five hits. “There were plays we should have made that we didn’t, and they made plays when they should have.”

The Bucks trailed 2-0 after one inning but faced a golden opportunity when Damron walked the bases loaded in the third. A fastball on the generous outside corner got Damron out of that jam.

Down 4-0 in the fourth, Buckeye finally scored after Jake Case broke up a no-hit bid, Ben Grega walked, Max Wilson singled and No. 9 hitter Matt Shook walked. However, Damron again limited damage with a 6-3 groundout that ended on a bang-bang call at first.

Those blown chances were devastating, but the knockout came with runners on second and third with no outs in the sixth, when Damron went strikeout, strikeout, fly out.

Damron exited with no outs in the seventh after reaching the maximum 125 pitches, giving him a collective line of 12 innings, one run, eight hits, 12 walks and 25 strikeouts against Buckeye this season. Alex Brill picked up the save.

“Execution was just not there,” Bucks coach Steve Wright said. “Unfortunately, it wasn’t our day. It’s tough. There’s not more I can say, really.”

Firelands, which has won 10 straight, scored two runs apiece in the first and third innings against Josh Meyer (4-3), and three were set up by first-and-third baserunning.

The first run scored after immediate steal attempt by pinch runner Mason Rogozinski baited Meyer into a balk. Colin Ransom added a single to make the score 2-0.

The third inning saw Meyer step off legally and throw to third while allowing Ransom to take second. A two-run single by Clayton Lucki moved the ante to 4-0.

Suffice it to say, the Bucks rode the bus back to Medina County pondering multiple what-ifs.

“(The start) got them up a notch and us down a notch,” Wright said. “That set the tone.”

Contact Albert Grindle at (330) 721-4043 or agrindle@medina-gazette.com.

Firelands 4, Buckeye 1

Cuyahoga Community College West

Division II District Semifinal

Buckeye (12-15) Firelands (17-7)

AB R H BI AB R H BI

Caniglia 1b 4 0 0 0 Gall cf 4 0 0 0

Matras lf 2 0 0 0 Brill rf 4 0 0 0

Neel 2b 3 0 0 0 Urban ss 2 2 0 0

Faught c 4 0 2 0 Stull 1b 3 0 1 0

Case ss 3 1 1 0 Ransom 2b 2 1 2 1

Matson rf 3 0 1 0 Lucki dh 3 0 1 2

Grega dh 0 0 0 0 Kovach c 1 0 0 0

Wilson 3b 3 0 1 0 Meyers 3b 3 0 1 0

Shook cf 1 0 0 1 Verhovec lf 1 0 0 0

Meyer p 0 0 0 0 Damron p 0 0 0 0

Schnepp pr 0 0 0 0 Rogozinski pr 0 1 0 0

Wright ph 0 0 0 0 Riebold ph 1 0 0 0

Bradnan ph 1 0 0 0 Mullins ph 1 0 0 0

Myers rf 0 0 0 0

Totals 24 1 5 1 Totals 25 4 5 3

BUCKEYE 000 100 0 — 1 5 2

FIRELANDS 202 000 x — 4 5 1

LOB — Buckeye 10, Firelands 7. E — Case, Matson, Kovach. SB — Grega, Case, Rogozinski. CS — Wright.

IP H R ER BB SO

Buckeye

Meyer (L, 4-3) 6 5 4 2 2 9

Firelands

Damron (W) 6+ 4 1 1 7 12

Brill (S) 1 1 0 0 0 1

WP — Damron. HBP — by Meyer (Urban, Kovach), by Damron (Grega).

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