Fredrica Academy survived Trinity Christian’s first onslaught Tuesday but couldn’t find a way to come back after the Crusaders scored six more runs to put the Knights away for good 15-11.
After the Knights defense forced three scoreless innings, the Crusaders got hot scoring 15 runs on 14 hits. Frederica got an early 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third, but would only hold the lead for one more inning before Trinity Christian took control in the fifth inning.
“This has kind of been our MO here lately. In the last three games we scored 22, we scored 9 and scored 11. We’re starting to swing the bat well but the problem is we’re giving up a bunch of runs,” said Frederica head coach Greg Roberts. “As you can tell, every time we scored runs we gave up some runs and we just got to find a way to stop that. Early in the year we were able to get people out and weren’t hitting it well, and now it’s flipped on us. So we just have to find a way going into the playoff to slow that down.”
Fredrica allowed 10 batters to reach by giving up seven walks and hitting three batters in the final four innings.
Starting pitcher Blake Counts pitched 4.1 innings giving up eight hits, five runs, four of which were earned runs, and three walks. After the first inning and earning his only strikeout of the game, Counts struggled to put batters away as the Crusaders adjusted their hitting.
Regardless of what he threw at the mound, Trinity Christian connected and scored runs.
Jonathan Landers came in to relieve Counts in the middle of the fifth inning and pitched until the middle of the sixth. During that time frame, Landers gave up seven runs on four hits. He walked three batters as well.
Trinity Christian scored 11 runs in two innings and took a 12-6 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth.
Tyler Motos came in to finish the game and potentially find a way to slow down the Crusaders offense, but it wasn’t enough. Motos gave up three runs on two hits giving Trinity Christian a seven run lead headed into the bottom of the seventh.
“They’re having problems keeping pace.” Roberts commented on his pitching staff. “They get on the mound and once runners gets on it’s almost like the panic sits in on them and the game takes over instead of letting them control the game as pitchers.”
It wasn’t just the pitching that had problems on the field, the defense had five errors that ultimately allowed Trinity Christian to keep the momentum and keep scoring. The Knights didn’t lack scoring as they put up 11 runs on 12 hits.
Frederica just couldn’t get the stops when it needed to.
Despite falling 15-11 in this game, Roberts and his team look at the next two games against Trinity Christian as a playoff series instead of individual wins and losses.
“We’ve already locked into the playoffs so whether we fall third fourth whatever it may be at this point, it’s kind of mute to us,” Roberts said. “We’re trying to play this as a playoff series. So we’re going to attack Friday as win two and move on. We’re playing this thing just like it would be a playoff contention round.”