RAVENSWOOD – Mother Nature scrambled the Class A Region 4 Baseball Championship Tuesday, drenching Wright Field and causing a suspension of Game 1 after three innings with the host Ravenswood Red Devils and Buffalo Bison deadlocked 3-3. The suspended game was set to resume yesterday (Wednesday) where it stopped at 6 p.m., weather permitting.
Game 2 at Buffalo will be pushed back to today (Thursday, weather permitting) with Game 3, if necessary, tentatively set for Friday. Beyond that, if weather factors in, it will be a big time scramble to get the series completed. The state tournament opens next week at Power Park in Charleston.
Ravenswood grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, as Nic Taylor led off with a double to right field and scored on a throwing error off Blake Bennett’s infield slash. Chase Swain then delivered an opposite field RBI single to plate Bennett. Nathan Curtis was hit by a pitch. Lakin Tucker’s sacrifice bunt attempt popped up into a double play with pinch runner Sam Sturm caught off second base. Andrew Anglin grounded out and the Devils stranded a base runner.
In the top of the first inning, Swain had pitched around a lead-off double by senior Ian O’Donnell by enticing a ground out, line-out and finishing with a strikeout—one of seven he wrung up through the three innings. Swain fanned the side in the second inning.
In the top of the third inning, back-to-back doubles by senior Timothy Eades and O’Donnell (RBI) got Buffalo on the scoreboard. Swain struck out the next batter, but then walked two to load the bases. A wild pitch allowed O’Donnell to score tying the game at 2-2. Sophomore Brandon Dillard delivered an RBI single to put the Bison up 3-2, before Swain bore down and fanned two straight to leave two Bison stranded.
In the bottom of the third as the rain came, Bennett and Swain delivered one out singles and Curtis’s RBI ground out scored Bennett to knot the game at 3-3. A walk and an infield single by Lakin Tucker loaded the bases. As the rain intensified, Buffalo pitcher Michael Haber and Brennan Barr engaged in a drenched duel. Haber finally fanned Barr to end the inning and strand three Red Devils.
Umpires then called for a stoppage of play that turned into a suspension due to field conditions.
Swain fanned seven, walked two and scattered four hits. Haber fanned three, walked one, scattered five hits and hit one batter.
At the plate for Ravenswood, Swain had two singles and an RBI; Nic Taylor, a double and run scored; Blake Bennett, a single and two runs scored; Lakin Tucker, a single; and Nathan Curtis, an RBI.
For Buffalo, Ian O’Donnell had a pair of doubles and an RBI; Brandon Dillman, an RBI single and Timothy Eades, a double.