FARMINGTON — After falling behind 4-1 going into their final at-bats, the Park Hills Giants made a strong bid for a win by scoring three runs on three hits in the top of the seventh to tie the score, and force the Farmington Falcons to bat one more time.
The home-team advantage worked to the Falcons favor, though, as a one-out error, a pair of stolen bases and a walk set up a walk-off single by Brennan White that gave them a 5-4 win. White’s single came with two outs in the inning.
The Giants scored their first run in the top of the first, courtesy of two Falcon errors to score Nick Haney who had reached on a single. The Giants held the 1-0 lead until the bottom of the fourth as both pitchers kept the bases virtually empty of runners for the first three frames.
Catcher Collin Huitt helped the Falcons in that department by throwing out a runner trying to steal second in both the first and third innings.
The Falcons tied the game in the fourth due to a miscommunication by the Giants outfielders on a fly ball hit into the gap in left-center. The two outfielders collided, forcefully knocking the ball loose from the glove and allowing batter Collin Huitt to reach second on the play. Garrett Thomure drove Huitt in with a single to tie the score.
Errors would be the Giants nemesis with all five of the Falcons’ runs being unearned. With runners on first and second and one out in the fifth inning, a ball hit back to pitcher Jake Bridges ended up in center field instead as both the shortstop and second baseman gave way to each other on the throw to the bag. Andres Castro was able to score all the way from second on the play.
The Falcons scored twice in the sixth with Thomure leading off the inning with a single. A walk issued to Brandon Winder and a single by Matt Eaton loaded the bases for Castro. The Falcons tried a squeeze play that appeared to have been thwarted, but the rushed throw home sailed past the catcher to allow two runs to score on the play.
The Giants (8-4) put together their best offensive effort of the night in the top of the seventh. Drawing a lead-off walk, Cole Murphy was able to score the Giants second run after Bridges hit a bloop single into right and Haney hit a double for the only extra-base hit of the game. Haney finished the night 3-4 with the Giants only multi-hit game.
Keenan Johnson drove in a run on a ground-out to third, and Drew Harlow singled into center to score Haney from third.
Thomure drew a walk which resulted in his scoring the winning run for the Falcons on White’s single. The Falcons’ lead runner was caught stealing for the second out of the inning.
Logan Winder pitched all seven innings for the win, striking out four and yielding only seven hits and three walks. Bridges pitched the entire game for the Giants with three strike-outs, five walks and giving up six hits.
The Falcons are now 13-0 and they will travel to Park Hills this evening to play the Giants again for their final regular season game starting at 7 p.m.