Lake Placid’s Tyler Carr spread out five hits over slightly more than six innings as the Green Dragons beat the Frostproof Bulldogs, 7-4, in the first round of the 4A District 9 tournament last Monday.
Despite this, the game was nearly decided by a game-ending third strike.
“He (Carr) did not have his best stuff out there tonight,” said Lake Placid Head Coach D.W. Daum, “but he battled through it. As a senior who may be pitching his last game, he wanted to finish it.”
Carr did not give up a base hit until the third inning and held the Bulldogs scoreless for the first three innings. During that time, Lake Placid built a 4-0 lead.
Isaiha Velasquez led off the bottom of the first with a walk for Lake Placid and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Alex Miller. Velasquez scored moments later on a single by Carr into right field as the Dragons struck first to take a 1-0 lead.
That score held true until the bottom of the third as Lake Placid loaded the bases on two walks and an infield single by Carr. Laine Daum came up with a huge base hit into right center field to drive in two runs, giving Lake Placid a 3-0 lead. With runners on second and third, Justin LaRosa capped off the scoring for the inning with a ground ball to second base.
Frostproof cut the lead in half scoring runs in both the fourth and fifth innings.
Carr walked the first two batters in the fourth inning then a base hit by Clay Barnes into left field drove in the Bulldogs first run. On the same play, Lake Placid gunned down Luke Petrie, who was trying to advance to third base. Outstanding defensive plays on the next two batters by third baseman Velasquez and second baseman Samual Callahan ended the Bulldog threat.
That same defense faltered slightly in the fifth inning allowing Frostproof’s J.D. Hawthorne to reach on an error with two outs in the inning. The speedy Hawthorne stole second base and scored on a base hit by Barnes into center field. Marcus Bobb followed with a hard liner heading into right field, but did not quite get there as Lake Placid first baseman Jacob Cram snagged the ball in midflight to end the inning with the Green Dragons still holding a 4-2 lead.
Lake Placid added three runs in the bottom of the sixth, taking advantage of two walks and three errors by Frostproof to extend their lead to five, 7-2.
Frostproof rallied in the top of the seventh as Hawthorne singled with one out and later scored on a single by Curt Barnes to make the score 7-3. The Bulldogs later loaded the bases with one out and Lake Placid took advantage with a force out at home.
Then the bizarre happened. With Cory Franks at the plate for Frostproof, a third strike call on a full count pitch by reliever Paul Cantwell should have ended the game. But the scoreboard in the outfield still showed a full count.
After a brief discussion between umpire and coaches — mixed with a moment of confusion on the field –– the umpire allowed Franks to continue his at bat. The next pitch was a ball, forcing in a run and keeping the bases loaded with two outs.
Cantwell ended any uncertainty with a strikeout of the next batter to end the game with Lake Placid winning, 7-4.