The Duncan Banner

April 19, 2013

Fletcher escapes game one vs. Central High

Evan Grice
The Duncan Banner

CENTRAL HIGH — If game one of the Class A district championship series between Central High and Fletcher was just a dress rehearsal, then the finale should be nothing short of classic.

Central High managed to fight back from a 2-0 deficit, to claim the lead at 5-4, only to see the Wildcats escape in the bottom of the seventh with a 6-5 victory.

“We played great in our first game today,” Central coach David Bussey said. “We knew this was going to be a tough game, because the pitcher we faced throws a good curveball. Anytime a kid has a good curveball it makes you stay on your toes. I was missing two starters, and that hindered us a little bit. We’re going to come back tomorrow and win a doubleheader, we’re not out of it.”

Before the Wildcats could celebrate a walk-off single by Lane Dobbs in the bottom of the seventh inning, things took a turn for the ugly.

With the score in favor of the Bronchos at 5-4 and one out, third baseman Chase McCullar hit a slow roller which was fielded cleanly by CHHS’ Matthew Quisenberry for an out at first base.

However, the tying run did score, which prompted ugly scenes from the Fletcher dugout.

McCullar was seen performing an obscene gesture towards the Bronchos dugout, along with in the direction of the Bronchos fans in attendance, while being mobbed by his teammates down the first base line.

As a result of this, McCullar was ejected from the game and sent to the stands.

Moments after being asked to leave the stands by his coach, McCullar was spotted showing another obscene gesture in the direction of the Bronchos fans as he walked behind the bleachers towards the bus.

Before all the ugly, there was plenty of pretty good baseball being played by both teams.

Central High’s comeback got a kickstart in the top of the third inning when Ashton Wright smacked a two-run homerun just inside the foul pole in left field, to tie the game at 2-2.

In the bottom of the third inning, confusion reigned supreme on a sacrifice fly call.

When John Black flied out to right field, bringing in the go-ahead run at the time, Daven Anthony was caught trying to get back to first base.

As a result of the mass confusion between Anthony and his teammate, a collision occurred with Central High’s Derek Davis being forced to leave the game with a knee injury.

Not too long after, in the top of the fourth inning, another collision occurred at first base between Central High’s Austen Dewitt and Fletcher pitcher Lane Dobbs.

Dobbs ended up taking the worst of the exchange, prompting words to be exchanged between both teams and warnings to be issued by both umpires.

Dain Hyde made it 4-2 for the Wildcats in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI groundout.

Then, the Bronchos made their second comeback of the evening.

Joseph Flood collected an RBI, which scored Chance Mathesen after a throwing error at first base to make it 4-3 in the top of the fifth inning.

After Bronchos starting pitcher Jarrett Sparks worked his way out of a bases loaded jam in the bottom half of the inning, Central High tied the game in the sixth.

Matthew Quisenberry redeemed himself after missing two bunt attempts, to hit a dribbler to second base, which scored John Repp.

Dewitt then gave the Bronchos the lead at 5-4 with an RBI in the top of the seventh with the bases loaded.

The damage could have been greater if it hadn’t been for a superb catch in center field by Shelby Moon, robbing Kade Taylor of extra bases.

Wright took the loss on the mound for the Bronchos, allowing two runs on three hits in 2/3 innings work.

Jarrett Sparks pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing eight hits with three walks and three strikeouts.

Dobbs got the win on the mound for the Wildcats, throwing a complete game effort. He allowed five runs on 12 hits with three walks and seven strikeouts.

These two teams will meet for game two at noon today from Broncho Field. Should Central High win, a deciding third game will follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of the second game.