Pitching strategy backfires on Carson in winner’s bracket loss
Carson City played the pitch-count game Friday night, and it failed.
Carson, with Eddie Tierney on the mound, led 8-1 after three innings thanks to a seven-run third inning keyed by Wes Simpson’s three-run homer.
Tierney was lifted after three innings, and Reno National beat up Carson’s relief contingent for 13 runs and 12 hits over the final three innings to grab a 14-10 come-from-behind win at Governors Field in the District 1 12-year-old all-star tournament.
The loss sends Carson into a loser’s bracket game tonight at 7:30 against South Tahoe. The loser of that game will be eliminated from championship consideration and sent into the consolation bracket.
Carson led 10-6 after five, but Reno struck for eight runs in the top of the sixth, four coming on Aidan Layfield’s grand slam off Ethan Foley with one out. Kyle Navarro came on and would give up two more runs before retiring the side.
Reno reliever Collin Beach gave up one-out walks to Navarro and Foley, giving local fans some up. Those were dashed moments later when Tyler Gurrieri’s liner to first was turned into a game-ending double play.
Carson manager Dave Navarro was obviously an unhappy camper after the contest.
“We brought guys in, and they were getting groundballs but we weren’t making plays,” he said. “That’s what it came down to.
“We thought about it (leaving Eddie in). His left hamstring was tight. I don’t want to use that as an excuse. We had planned to throw him to 65 pitches. The guys we were bringing in could throw strikes, and we thought we could get outs.”
Tierney was overpowering, striking out seven, walking one and hitting a better in his three-inning stint. The only run he allowed was unearned.
Errors have played a big role in both games thus far. Carson has made 10 errors, leading to eight unearned runs. Not acceptable in a high-level all-star tournament.
“I still think we’re playing tight defensively,” said Dave Navarro. “We can hit the ball. We’re going to score runs. We’re a good hitting team.”
Carson scored an unearned run in the first when Justin Nussbaumer reached on an infield single and scored on a two-out error. Reno pushed across an unearned run of its own in the top of the third on Carson Isip’s single.
Carson broke loose in the bottom of the inning, sending 10 batters to the plate and scoring seven runs for an 8-1 lead.
Nussbaumer and Kobe Morgan singled. After a wild pitch moved runners to second and third, Tierney was walked intentionally to load the bases. Brian Guthrie drove home Nussbaumer and Morgan with a slicing double to right to make it 3-1. Kyle Navarro made it 4-1, scoring Tierney with a single.
After Chase Wixon struck out, Gurrieri singled home Navarro. Reno starter Ryan Forderhase was lifted in favor of Derek Riparbelli, who allowed a three-run homer to Simpson. The ball hit off the top of the fence in right-centerfield and went over. Damian Branco and Nussbaumer were retired to end the uprising.
Reno’s comeback started in the fourth against Branco when Tristan McClellan reached on an error and scored on Ryan DeRosa’s force out to make it 8-2.
The winners added four more in the fifth to make it 8-6 thanks to a run-scoring double by Isip and a one-out two-run double by McClellan. The fourth run scored on a double steal, as McClellan roared home when Guthrie threw through to second in a first-and-third situation.
Carson had a chance to extend its lead in the bottom of the fifth.
Zaid Abdelhady singled to center with one out and reached second on Branco’s infield hit. Tyler Stagliano forced Branco at second, Abdelhady taking third on the play. Morgan walked to load the bases, but Tierney was retired on a pop-up to second.
Reno scored eight runs on eight hits plus an error to take the lead for good thanks to Layfield’s big hit. Layfield had struck out in his only other at-bat in the game.
Carson’s 10-year-old team returns to action today at 4:30 against Carson Valley. Carson is 2-0 in the tournament and Carson Valley is 1-0 after a first-round bye.
The Carson 11s are off until Sunday.