Tigers suffer letdown in loss to Scarlets

Published 11:40 pm Thursday, April 20, 2017

Coming off an emotional walk-off win over now No. 1 Northfield on Tuesday, the Albert Lea baseball team hit the road to play Mankato West on Thursday.

After committing four errors in Tuesday’s game, the Tigers made three more errors and walked eight batters in a 6-2 loss to the Scarlets.

“I think tonight’s game was a great lesson for our boys,” Tigers coach Sean Gaston said. “We have said to them before and we will say it to them again, ‘You have to make your opponent earn every out and every baserunner.’ Tonight, we did not do that.”

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Tigers’ starter Blake Simon walked seven, hit two batters and struck out five over four innings. He surrendered six runs (three earned).

The Scarlets put up four runs in the first inning and never looked back.

The Tigers answered with a single run in the second and fifth inning with an RBI each from Cody Ball, who had the game-winning RBI double against Northfield, and a homer from Ben Witham, who has three RBIs in Tuesday’s game.

Still, the game comes down to execution and the Tigers failed to execute, unlike the Scarlets.

“Mankato West is a very good team,” Gaston said. “Scarlets’ coach (Ethan Anderson) has built a solid program and they played that way. I think it is a testament to them that, on a cold night, their boys came out and executed pretty well. We can match that execution, but we need to keep working.”

Despite the negative outcome, Gaston did find some positives for his team.

“Tonight, we faced adversity and responded strong enough to keep ourselves in it until the end,” he said. “If we can do that, we will find more ways to win games.”

Albert Lea will have to forget tonight’s loss quickly. It will travel to Stewartville on Friday.

“Fortunately, for us, with a strong performance tomorrow, we can still ‘win the week,’ which means we have plenty to play for tomorrow.

First pitch is slated for 5 p.m.

Box score

Mankato West 6, Albert Lea 2

MW   400   200   X — 6

AL      010   010   0 — 2

Albert Lea pitching: Blake Simon (L) 4 IP, 6 R, 3 ER, 2 HBP, 7 BB, 5 K; Jake Bordewick 2 IP, H, BB, K

Albert Lea batting: Alex Bledsoe 1-3, R, BB; Blake Simon 2-4, 2B; Cody Ball 1-4, RBI; Ben Witham 1-3, HR, RBI; Zach Edwards 1-2, BB; Alex Goodmanson 1-3; Logan Stadheim 0-2; Carter Simon 0-1; Jake Bordewick 0-3; Ty Harms 0-3