’Horns horn in on Grizzlies
by Emily Horos
ehoros@mdjonline.com
March 15, 2014 04:06 AM | 1555 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Kell right-hander Chris Lucero delivers to a Creekview batter on Friday. Lucero kept the Grizzlies in check and helped the Longhorns get a key region win.
<Br>Staff photo by Kelly J. Huff
Kell right-hander Chris Lucero delivers to a Creekview batter on Friday. Lucero kept the Grizzlies in check and helped the Longhorns get a key region win.
Staff photo by Kelly J. Huff
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CANTON — Creekview stranded two runners in the bottom of the seventh inning, and Kell claimed a 3-1 victory Friday night.

Creekview had been sitting atop the Region 7AAAAA standings, but now sits 3-2 in the region and 6-4 overall after back-to-back losses to Cambridge and Kell.

The Grizzlies had plenty of opportunities Friday, but coach Mike Nayman said they didn’t make things happen when they needed to.

In the fifth inning, when they only trailed 1-0, Creekview tried to get a run across the plate

“We had a good chance to pick up a run on a ball that was kicking around the infield a bit,” Nayman said.

But it wasn’t meant to be. The throw to the plate beat Nick Williams by half a step, keeping the Grizzlies from tying the score.

Kell (5-5, 3-3) tacked on two runs in the top of the sixth, which gave the Longhorns security and put the Grizzlies’ backs against the wall.

“There is a big difference between 1-0 and 3-0,” Nayman said. “To fight back from three runs in the last inning is a lot. Obviously, the more runs you are down, the longer the odds.”

Creekview shortstop Chandler Wold took the mound in the top of the seventh and retired the Longhorns in order.

The 3-0 score held until the bottom of the seventh, when Creekview finally got on the board. With the winning run at the plate, Creekview was retired on a soft infield hit.

“Certainly, we have to give credit to Kell,” Nayman said. “It was a very competitive game all the way around.”

For Kell, in its first year under new coach Keith Brown, which hasn’t had much consistency so far, the win was big.

“Creekview is right on top, so it’s nice to take one of the top guys out,” said Brown, who succeeded his mentor, retired Longhorns coach Donnie English, at the helm. “We have been getting better. We are getting in our stride now, I hope.”

Kell started the season 2-4 before winning three of its last four games, including matchups with region opponents Pope and Osborne.

Brown attributed it to more consistent practice after the weather improved.

“We have a young squad, and all that snow and rain kind of hurt us,” Brown said. “It’s good to get out there and get in the flow of things. The kids are starting to pick each other up a little more and buy into what we are doing.”
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