Cadets club their way past Bridgeport
BEVERLY — Maeson Long provided Fort Frye with a boost from the No. 9 hole.
The FFHS freshman third baseman was 3-for-3 with a triple and two RBIs as the No. 7-seeded Cadets downed visiting Bridgeport, 10-1, Saturday in an OHSAA Division III baseball sectional semifinal.
“Not bad for the freshman,” said first-year Fort skipper Rob Nelson. “He had a big game for us. He played well for us.”
With the win, Fort Frye (14-7) advances to play at top-seeded Barnesville in a sectional championship game at 5 p.m. Tuesday. The Shamrocks blanked 13-seeded Bellaire, 7-0, in another Saturday semi.
Lefty Luke Nelson is expected to get the nod on the bump for the Cadets.
“At this time of year, anything can happen, and I always tell the kids you win to play seven more innings,” Rob Nelson said. “So, we get to play seven more innings Tuesday.”
Against 15-seeded Bridgeport (5-19), FFHS southpaw Devin Layton started and got the win on the hill. Seth Miller and Luke Nelson also threw for the Cadets.
“I thought our pitchers did well,” Rob Nelson said. “Seth hadn’t worked in awhile, so I wanted to get some rust off him.”
After Long, Nate Brothers, Luke Nelson, and Layton added two hits.
Brothers also drove in two runs as did Tate Engle.
Bridgeport righty Dylan Gregorcic suffered the mound setback. The Indians only had four hits, and three of those came in their first at-bat.
With two outs in the top of the opening frame, Matt Fouty, Gregorcic, and Cooper Dulesky all singled to stake the Indians to a 1-0 advantage.
Fort got the equalizer in the bottom half of the inning when Brothers singled home Nelson.
The following frame, the Cadets capitalized on three consecutive bunt hits and Indian errors to plate four runs.
Long got it started with a bunt, and taking his cue, Zane Greenleaf and Nelson did the same.
“I’m a small ball type of coach,” Rob Nelson said. “I like to bunt, and we saw an opportunity right there to put some runners in motion. When you’ve got speed, you can play small ball.”
Long tripled home Brenden Huck in the third to make it 6-1. And then, the Cadets won going away with two runs in both the fifth and sixth innings.
“We’ve got to get the bats rolling, and we’ll see what happens (at Barnesville),” Nelson said.