The Ada High School baseball team was in too giving of a mood Monday night, when local rival Byng visited Cougar Field.
Ada committed eight errors, and three pitchers combined for eight walks and a hit batter in a 9-6 loss to the Pirates.
Ada fell to 2-3 overall and 1-2 in District 4A-3 play, while Byng improved to 4-1 and 2-1.
“Too many errors. Too many walks,” first-year Ada head coach Austin Jarvis said following the game. “I was proud of our fight. We didn’t quit. We fought back. We gave ourselves a chance; we just dug ourselves too big of a hole early. We gave them 17 free bases, and you’re just not going to win games like that.”
Only one of Byng’s nine runs were earned in the contest. The Cougars had committed just five errors in their first four games combined to start the season.
“This is the first day we’ve had a defensive breakdown like this. We’ve been pretty solid defensively,” Jarvis said.
Trenton Shaw led off the game with a walk for Byng and later scored when he attempted to steal third and a throw went into left field.
The Pirates made it 2-0 in the top of the second when Gage Fuller reached on a two-base error to lead things off and later scored on an RBI single by nine-hole hitter Ashton Zilem.
Byng tacked on three runs without the aid of a hit in the top of the third inning. The Pirates took advantage of three walks, two errors and an ill-timed wild pitch in the uprising to push their lead to 5-0.
Tyler Bargas led off the top of the fourth inning with an infield hit for the visitors and moved to second on a passed ball. He later scored on a sacrifice fly by Collin O’Grady that put the Pirates on top 6-0.
Ada finally got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jarrett Ellis clubbed a double to right-center field to start things off. Hunter Conklin then singled and went to second on a throw. Ellis raced home on a sacrifice fly by Christian Maloy, and Conklin scored on an RBI double by Trel Moore that trimmed the Byng advantage to 6-2.
Parker Presley walked to lead off the Byng half of the fifth inning and went all the way to third on an errant pickoff attempt. He trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Shaw that increased the Byng lead to 7-2.
Ada scratched for a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth via a base hit by Zac Carroll, two Byng errors, a wild pitch and a passed ball to get within 7-4.
The Pirates countered with two runs in the top of the seventh on an RBI double by Zilem — who finished with two of just five BHS hits — and two more Ada miscues to boost their lead to 9-4.
The Cougars tried to put together a rally in the bottom of the seventh.
Jalen Graham was hit by a pitch to start the bottom of the seventh, and Ellis followed with a base hit. Those two runners scored on wild pitches and passed balls to get Ada within 9-6.
Patrick Tims later drew a one-out walk, but Shaw — Byng’s third pitcher — caught Ada pinch-runner John Boone in a rundown for the second out of the inning.
Maloy then reached on a two-base error and advanced to third on a passed ball. Shaw earned the save when Moore lined out hard to center field for the final out of the game.
Ada pitchers Carroll, Tovan Thomsen and Cade Sliger combined for 10 strikeouts in the game. Sliger allowed two runs over three innings of relief for the hosts. He surrendered just one hit and one walk with four Ks.
“I thought Cade came in there at the end and kind of settled things down. He’s a freshman and hasn’t had much time and took advantage of his opportunity. I was very proud of him,” Jarvis said.
Feazle was the winning pitcher for Byng. He struck out six, walked just one and allowed only two runs in 5.1 innings of work. Carroll (1-2) absorbed the loss for Ada. He had five strikeouts and four walks in two innings.