Post 205 downs Post 740

EAST SPRINGFIELD – Richmond answered early, but was unable to answer late.

Post 205 plated a run in the top of the sixth inning to break a 4-4 tie enabling Tuscarawas County to complete the comeback in a 5-4 victory in a game filled with action Tuesday evening.

“It was a good ballgame,” veteran Richmond (5-11) head coach Sam Davis said. “Clay (Woodward) struggled early, but he settled down and did a good job. Tyler Krantz came in and did a really good job. He held them down. He kept us in the game, and he gave us a chance to win it.

“You have to give their pitcher credit. We had a couple of opportunities, but you have to give them credit. They made some nice plays when they had to.

“It was a good ballgame. The kids played hard. I’ll take that. If the kids keep playing like that, I will take that all the time.”

Tuscarawas County sent 38 batters to the plate, and Post 205 had at least one runner reach base safely every inning. Richmond sent 28 batters to the plate, and Post 740 had one runner reach safely in five of the seven innings.

Both teams scored runs in the first and second stanzas.

“We have lost a few one-run games, and it was nice to win a one-run game,” veteran Tuscarawas County (8-11) head coach Jim Baxter said. “It is tough taking a long trip and playing a seven-inning game. It is hard to get everyone in the game.

“Today, we only had 11 guys. We were able to get all the guys in, and we were still able to play a good, competitive game. It worked out well for us.”

Brandon Fox picked up the complete-game win. Fox recorded three strikeouts and one walk, while allowing four earned runs on five hits.

Tuscarawas County played a clean game in the field, while Richmond committed three errors.

Both teams had a runner picked off in the fifth inning.

Woodward took the loss. He struck out two, walked six and allowed four runs in his two-plus innings of work. Krantz pitched the final five innings. He struck out five while not issuing a free pass.

Richmond did not have a base runner in the third and seventh innings.

Both programs have a great deal of respect for each other.

“This is our 20th year of Legion baseball and we have a really-good relationship with them,” Baxter said. “Sam has been coaching as long as I have. We must be crazy.”

Davis said he has a lot of respect for Baxter and Post 205.

“This is our 21st year,” Davis said. “We have been around one year longer than them. Coach Baxter is a great guy. He is an honorable man. We have become really good friends over the years. We always play good games. There is no mouthing off by the kids or anything. Coach Baxter runs a first-class program.

“He does things the right way.”

The Panthers opened the scoring as Post 205 plated a pair of runs in the top of the first.

Ethan Wenger led off with a single, and with one out, Mitch Smith doubled into the right-center gap. Wenger scored when the ball was bobbled in the outfield. After back-to-back walks loaded the bases, Fox plated Smith with a fielders’ choice groundout to give the Panthers a 2-0 advantage.

Richmond third baseman Collin Scott fielded Fox’s ground ball, he stepped on third for one out, but his throw across the diamond to first baseman Tanner Evans bounced in the dirt and Evans was unable to pick it allowing the second run to score.

Richmond came right back to plate three runs in the bottom half of the inning.

Josh Pasek started things off with a single and Nolan Marcus was hit by a pitch. After two outs were recorded, Alec Jones doubled to plate Pasek. Krantz recorded his two-run hit scoring Marcus and Jones to give Richmond a 3-2 advantage.

Post 205 plated a pair of runs in the second to regain the lead.

Smith drove in a run with a double in almost the same spot as in his first at-bat, and the visitors retook the lead on a base hit by Tom Addy to make the score 4-3.

Once again, Richmond was able to answer.

This time, Tanner Wise walked with one out. Pasek advanced Wise to third on his second hit of the game, and Marcus followed with his sacrifice fly scoring Wise to knot the score at 4.

“I thought we had good at-bats,” Davis said. “We pitched pretty well, and we played well defensively.”

After three scoreless innings, the Panthers took the lead for good in the sixth on Addy’s second-RBI single of the game.

“We were able to throw strikes, and when you are able to do that, it makes the game better,” Baxter said. “We made some nice plays in the field, and Tom Addy came up with that clutch hit. That was a big run for us.

“We played well once the game settled down. The first three innings lasted forever. The last four innings went by fast. That is what happens when you throw strikes. You look better when you throw strikes. That’s baseball I guess.”

Richmond will host Alliance at 6 p.m. today.

“We are 8-11,” Baxter said. “We have had trouble throwing strikes. That has been a problem for us all year.”

Tuscarawas County 5, Richmond 4

Tuscarawas County 220 001 0 – 5 8 0

Richmond 310 000 0 – 4 5 3

TUSCARAWAS COUNTY (8-11): Fox (WP, 3K, 1BB) and Honigford; Wenger 2S; Robinson S; Smith 2D, RBI; Addy 2S, 2RBI; Hershberger S, Fox RBI.

RICHMOND (5-11): Woodward (LP, 2IP, 2K, 6BB), Krantz (5K, 0BB) and Orr; Pasek 2S; Marcus RBI; Orr S; Jones D, RBI; Krantz S, 2RBI.