Three errors by Dixon lead to three runs for Iberia in the bottom of the sixth in a 5-3 as the Rangers become Frisco League Tournament champions
Championship games are supposed to be the most exciting games of tournaments and the Frisco League Tournament final did not disappoint.
It was a close game through and through thanks to both teams' pitchers, but a few errors in the bottom of the sixth for Dixon handed the game over to Frisco League rival Iberia in a 5-3 loss.
“I thought we played well for most of the game, but we just had one bad inning and were unable to close out the game,” Dixon coach Alex Shelton said.
Andrew Meier of Dixon and Riley Halley of Iberia started the game for their respective teams and both were throwing a gem early on.
The game was scoreless for both teams until the Rangers were able to get to Meier in the bottom of the third.
The Bulldogs answered with a run of their own in the top of the fourth.
After Iberia was able to tally one more run in the bottom of the fifth, Shelton would trot out his closer, Cole Emmons, for the sixth.
Meier finished with a no decision on five innings, two earned runs, three hits and a walk with 9 strikeouts.
Dixon brought out their rakes for the top of the sixth.
Emmons and Drake Rujawitz gave the Bulldogs back to back solo blasts for the Bulldogs to give them a 3-2 lead. Emmons and Rujawitz were the only Dixon players to have RBIs for the Bulldogs on the night. Both of them also had doubles on the night as well, for their only other hits, and Rujawitz had a sacrifice too.
After the homeruns Iberia coach Tom Vinson sent in his reliever, Darrien Dickey to finish the inning.
Halley's line was 5 1-3 innings, five hits and nine punch-outs.
The bottom of the sixth is when Dixon would shoot itself in the foot.
Three Bulldog errors led to three runs for the Rangers to give them the 5-3 lead.
Dixon couldn't come up with any runs in the top of the seventh, and so Iberia took home the tournament's first place honors.
Shelton couldn't look at the glass as half empty though.
“Although we are disappointed by the final outcome, there were lots of positives from not only the final game, but the entire tournament,” Shelton said. “Our pitching staff looked very formidable and we are starting to see some players putting it together at the plate.”
Up next, Dixon will host the Belle Tigers for the home opener on Monday at 5:00 p.m.
Shelton said the team won't forget Thursday's loss.
“We will use this tough loss as motivation and as a teaching tool for later in the season,” Shelton said. “I believe if we continue to compete at this level we will be a tough team throughout the season and find a lot of success.”