Blair miscues cost it in baseball defeat

5-8 Hastings tops Bears, 8-4


Blair High School baseball's rally couldn't match its unraveling Saturday afternoon at Vets Field.
The Class B No. 10 Bears committed three errors and surrendered five runs during the seventh inning of an 8-4 home loss to Hastings (5-8 overall). Senior Brady Brown plated classmate Tanner Jacobson in response, but BHS (5-8) still lost its third-straight game.
“It felt like we compounded one mistake with another mistake and then another mistake, and then it just started rolling,” Bears coach John Roan said. “We had no way of stopping it.”
In a tie game, the Tigers' seventh-inning lead-off hitter reached third base on a Blair throwing error. He scored on a sacrifice fly before two more runs touched home plate on a second infield throwing error.
Two more Hastings runners scored on the third BHS gaffe of the inning, too, producing an 8-3 advantage.
“In that kind of situation, we need one of our leaders to step up and stop the bleeding,” Roan said. “Because, I mean, if we go into the bottom of the seventh inning down a run or tied — that's a totally different ballgame.”
The beginning of the Eastern Midlands Conference matchup looked different in itself. The Bears initially built a three-run lead during the third and fourth innings. They scored first in the third after Carter Saylor opened things with a single. He moved up the basepath on a bunt and as Jacobson earned a walk.
BHS catcher Nate Wachter next hit a ball on the ground to score Blair's first run by sacrifice. Brown added to the lead with an RBI triple to deep centerfield as well.
J'Shawn Unger later started Blair's fourth frame with another triple. This one went to the wall, leading to Blaine Rosenbaum's sacrifice bunt, which pushed the Bears' advantage to 3-0.
It didn't take long for Hastings to answer, though. The Tigers scored twice on one swing — another triple — in the fifth inning to pull within one run.
The road squad later pulled even with BHS, 3-3, during the sixth frame when the Bears committed their first throwing error with the bases loaded. They got out of the inning, though, when Lucas Matejka — the starting pitcher — notched his seventh strikeout.
“He pitched well enough for us to win,” Roan said. “He's been solid the whole year as a starter.”
The coach doesn't feel Blair's mound work is the issue this season. Even so, the Bears dropped their eighth game Saturday and their second in a row to a team with a losing record.
“The good thing is we still have nine games left,” Roan said. “And, at the end of the day, if you're playing your best baseball at the end of the year, that's when it counts.”
The coach's lineup was schedule to face No 4 Omaha Gross on Monday before Thursday's 4:30 p.m. game at Crete's Tuxedo Park.

Hastings 8, No. 10 Blair 4
HHS (5-8) 0 0 0 0 2 1 5 — 8
BHS (5-8) 0 0 2 1 0 0 1 — 4

Blair Baseball