By Matt Goisman
KREBS — The Rangers twice overcame deficits of at least five runs, and Gunner Hass went the distance in Game 2 for the Rangers, helping them twice beat the Tigers, 12-11 and 17-7, in Friday's Pittsburg County Little League Big 13 championship at Deerinwater Field in Krebs.
In Game 1, the Tigers led 10-5 going into the bottom of the sixth. Tigers reliever Christian Hampton, who’d been pitching since the bottom of the fourth, started struggling with the strike zone in the bottom of the sixth, leading to two walks that helped load the bases with one out.
Up came Jake Edwards. Hampton got to two strikes on him, but Edwards then bounced one at Austin Bonebrake at third base. Bonebrake couldn’t field the ball and it rolled into left field, allowing two runs to score on the error.
Austin Dugan then hit a two-RBI double to right field to cut the deficit to 10-9. The Rangers tied the game on a suicide squeeze, and with the game tied 11-11 in the top of the seventh and Brendon Justice on third, Rhett Regan hit a walkoff RBI single to right to give the Rangers the win.
In Game 2, the Tigers led 6-0 going into the top of the third, but the Rangers scored 12 runs. The inning started with Justice singling, stealing two bases and coming home on a double by Regan. Regan stole third — the Rangers stole 23 bases Friday — and after Jake Edwards walked and stole second, Regan scored on a passed ball.
An RBI groundout by Austin Dugan made it 6-2 Tigers, then Gunner Hass singled to center field and stole second. Colten McEachern drew a walk, forcing Tigers coach David Strobridge to bring in Caden Hull as a relief pitcher.
An error on Hull led to another run, then Zach Clark hit an RBI infield single, with an error on the play leading to another run. Jaxon Rodriguez hit an RBI single to right, then an error by John Dixon at first base led to two more runs and a 9-6 Rangers lead.
For more on this story, see the print or electronic editions of the McAlester News-Capital. Click here for print edition home delivery or click here to see the Smart Edition for your computer, tablet, e-reader or smartphone.