The Tigers entered the post season as the third seed and hosted the 6th seeded Black Panthers of Northern Bedford in the District Five first round game. The Tigers gave the ball to senior Wyatt Appleby who turned in a clutch performance to lead the Tigers to the shutout victory.
How it happened
Appleby scattered 5 hits, had no walks and 4 Ks on 74 pitches. “Wyatt got ahead in the count, attacked their hitters with quality pitches and got several ground ball outs today”, Coach Paul Coffman said. Fourteen balls were hit in the infield today and the Tigers defense turned in a solid performance behind Appleby.
The Tigers added a run in the 5th when Luke Coffman’s fly ball was misplayed and Coffman who was hustling out of the box made it safely to second. Landon Arnold bunted Coffman to 3rd where he would score on a Wyatt Appleby sacrifice fly. “Luke’s hustle on that routine fly ball allowed us to manufacture a much needed insurance run at that time”, Coffman said.
Appleby sat the Black Panthers down in order in the 6th and the Tigers went back to work in the bottom of the inning adding two more insurance runs to make it 4-0. Alex Umbrell’s 2 run double was the big hit in the inning.
Appleby closed out the 7th with a 1-2-3 inning to secure the victory. Senior shortstop Luke Coffman was very busy with 8 assists on the day. Offensively, Drew Goshorn had a pair of hits and Colton Friese launched a double off the fence. Reese Musselman went the distance for NBC and took the loss. He gave up 4 runs on 7 hits. He had 4 Ks and no walks. Bowers and Kochara both had doubles for NBC.
“This was a solid first round win for us today against a formidable opponent. They came to play and had every intention of knocking us off. They had beaten us in the Altoona Curve Classic last month so I knew it wouldn’t be an easy game. I believe this is the first time ever that FM has beaten NBC in a baseball playoff game so it was nice to get that monkey off our back”, Coffman said.
The Tigers will travel to Southern Fulton on Thursday for a semi final matchup with the Indians at 4:30. The Indians swept the Tigers in the regular season.