In a back and forth battle the Crestview Rebels (16-5) defeated the Columbiana Clippers (12-10) 5-4 on Monday evening. The game featured a number of ties and lead changes.
Devin Rice (4-1) got the start for the Clippers pitching 5 innings while giving up 5 runs (3 earned) and striking out 5. Drew Cyrus finished off the sixth inning in spectacular fashion for Columbiana. Entering the game with runners on 1st and 3rd and no body out Cyrus was able to get out of the inning without allowing any runs. After a steal of second by the Rebels, Cyrus induced a ground ball to short where Rice was able to get the runner at third into a rundown eventually getting him out. Next, Cyrus struck a Rebel batter out on a nice high fastball while getting the final out on a ground ball to second baseman Matt Weidner.
Offensivly, the Clippers opened up the scoring in the first inning by plating two in the frame. Mitch Davidson reached base on a one out infield single and eventually stole second. He would score on a Tim Davin ground ball that resulted in a throwing error by the Rebel third baseman. Davin himself would come around to score when Devin Rice lined a two out single to right giving the Clippers an early 2-0 lead.
The lead was short lived as Crestview was able to tie it up in the bottom of the frame scoring one on a wild pitch an the other on a sacrifice fly. The Clippers quickly responded, however, by plating one in the second. After singles by Weidner and Davidson, Keenan Green grounded out to shortstop bringing home Weidner.
Crestview scored single runs in both the third and fourth innings taking a 4-3 lead over Columbiana. In the fifth inning Matt Weidner hit a sacrifice fly scoring Nate Armstrong to tie the game at 4. Armstrong was running for Austin Saverko who led off the inning with a double to deep left field. The lead was short lived, however, as Crestview got a run in the bottom of the frame to take a 5-4 lead. After a lead off walk, a failed sacrifice attempt and a flyout to left, Crestview was able to put two bloop singles back to back with the second resulting in the eventual winning RBI.
Both teams stranded 10 runners on base in the game with 9 of those coming in the first 3 innings for Columbiana.
The Clippers are back in action Wednesday evening as they host Salem. First pitch at Firestone park is 5 pm.