(Harrison) Somerset defeated Augusta, 11-8, in the 13-year-old Babe Ruth 2012 state baseball tournament on a cool Thursday night at RADR Field.
The victory keeps Somerset in the winner’s bracket and sets up a date with equally undefeated Central Maine at 7PM this evening (Friday) back at RADR Field.
Augusta moves into the other bracket in this double elimination tournament and needs to stay clean the rest of the way for a chance at the state title and a possible rematch with Somerset.
Augusta had faced Somerset in a district matchup on July 14th with Somerset winning, 5-4. The stakes were much higher in Thursday night’s game.
This tourney game was large on runs, errors, pitchers used, and controversy. Augusta had a nice five-run inning in the bottom of the third to take a 6-4 advantage. Unfortunately, one of those runs was taken away in the top of the fourth and that’s where the controversy began.
The five runs should have stayed in my opinion. Let me draw it out in the shortest way possible: Augusta sent nine batters to the plate in that inning, three batters made outs, and one runner was on base when the last out was recorded. There is no conceivable way that Augusta wouldn’t have had to have scored five runs……….but the ruling stood and fortunately the removed run didn’t matter at the end.
The pitching of starter/closer Dustin Crawford saved the day for Somerset. Dustin pitched the first two innings and gave up one run on one hit. He was back in the seventh as the closer to protect a 3-run lead and responded with a scoreless final inning.
Somerset exploded for seven runs in the sixth inning after two outs to turn a 6-4 deficit into an 11-6 advantage. Kyle Dugan (3 hits/3 RBI) had two of his hits in the decisive sixth as Somerset sent twelve men to the plate.
During that inning, Augusta replaced tiring starter Justin Rodrigue with the bases loaded and no runs in. After striking out Mason Oakes for the second out Justin’s replacement, Andrew Browne, surrendered a walk and four straight hits before the bleeding was stopped by reliever Kolbe Merfeld. But Somerset at that point had a five-run lead.
Augusta got two back in the bottom of the sixth thanks to Brady Smith’s two-run single. However, they left the bases loaded as reliever Brendan Curran escaped by striking out Zach Glidden and sending Somerset into the seventh with a three-run (11-8) advantage.
The most acrobatic sequence in this game was Taylor Heath jumping in an attempt to avoid the tag of catcher Will Stinson. Taylor was ruled out.
Somerset ended up with eight hits while Augusta had seven.
Brendan Curran drove in two runs and scored three runs for Somerset.
Andrew Browne and Brady Smith each had two hits for Augusta. Brady added four RBI.
Dylan Abbott made several terrific plays in center for Augusta.
There were at least seven errors by my count most of them on infield grounders.
There were also seven different pitchers used as both coaches tried to balance the need to win this game with the need to have eligible pitchers in the games ahead.
If the weather stays good a state 13’s champion will be crowned on Sunday night at RADR Field.
(The pictures above and below enlarge significantly if you click on them.)