A bizarre ending to a wild game.
With the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, Aaron Henry broke slightly off third. Reed pitcher Doug Hurn flinched ever so slightly, and was called for a balk to send Henry home with the winning run and give Carson a 7-6 win over the Raiders in the first round of the 4A zone playoffs Wednesday night at Carson High.
The win sends the Senators into the winner's bracket against Galena, a 3-0 winner over Douglas, tonight at 6 at Carson. Douglas will play Reed in an elimination game at 3 p.m. at Carson.
"We started to send our guy, and he flinched," Carson coach Ron McNutt said. "It was a great high school game."
Carson was aggressive on the basepaths in the seventh inning after Lucas Delong's three-run homer off Jake Rasner had tied the game at 6 in the top of the inning.
With runners on first and second, Henry stole third. McNutt had Jon Teeter, who had reached on an error, get in a rundown between first and second. Reed didn't take the bait, allowing Teeter to walk into second. Willie Bowman recieved an intentional walk to load the bases, setting the stage for the wild finish.
"This kid (Hurn) had a little more pop than the other guy (Clayton Spicer)," McNutt said. "We were going to try something, and if it works, great. If it doesn't, we go extra innings."
Brolsma, whose homer had given the Senators a 6-3 lead, said he believed his team would come back after Delong's homer.
"I knew we'd come back and get it," said the Carson catcher, who was 3-for-4. "We got it done at the plate today. A lot of guys came up with clutch hits."
Besides Brolsma's three hits, the Senators received two hits from Bowman, Teeter and Holmes. It was feast or famine night for Holmes, who left five runners on his first two at-bats before homering and singling.
Carson snapped a 2-all tie in the second with two runs off Delong. Teeter, who homered in the first, singled home Handley, and Bowman singled home Teeter.
Reed cut the deficit to 4-3 in the third, as Ryan Hill doubled, moved to third on an infield out and scored on Delong's single. Delong stole second, but Carson's Jake Rasner fanned Willie Meier to end the threat.
A solo homer by Neil Holmes in the fifth and Brolsma in the sixth gave Carson a 6-3 lead. It was Brolsma's third hit of the game. He had singled, doubled and reached on a walk earlier.
"It was a fastball away," Brolsma said. "I slumped against Reno, but I'm feeling better at the plate now."
Spicer replaced Delong on the mound after the homer, and got out of the inning unscathed.
Reed had plenty of runners on in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, but Rasner escaped unscathed each time.
Rasner came undone in the seventh, however, walking Scott Devries and Hill to open the inning. After striking out Ryan Lamme looking, he gave up the game-tying homer to Delong which tied the game at 6.
McNutt said he was pleased with Rasner's performance except for the two walks he gave up before Delong's blast.