Too many walks given up by pitching and too many runners stranded on base sinks Waynesville on Friday against Hillcrest

WAYNESVILLE — Waynesville baseball didn't have much time to celebrate its win over conference-rival Camdenton.

On Friday in Waynesville the Hillcrest Hornets came into town and spoiled the Tigers' good mood with a 13-4 beatdown.

The Tigers narrowly escaped the run-rule in the bottom of the fifth thanks to an RBI double to left-center by senior Trent Simpson that cut an 11-1 lead to 11-2

Hillcrest would have accomplished the feat in the sixth too if it wasn't for sophomore Seth Hedrick mirroring Simpson's RBI double and junior Derek Wood swatting a single into left to make the score 12-4.

The real highlights though, came from the field.

Sophomore Jacob Saylor made a diving catch from his third base position to take away a bunt, senior Shane Jewett made a diving play in the outfield and sophomore Trey Simpson robbed a Hornet of a hit when he leaped for a line drive at first.

In the top of the seventh, instead of flashing the leather, it was Hedrick showcasing his arm from the outfield. Hedrick caught a fly ball and a Hillcrest player tried to tag up at third and score.

Hedrick threw an absolute strike from deep in centerfield and the throw was a one-hopper to home plate to toast the runner.

The tough part about the game for Waynesville was the fact that for every good play they had, there was a costly mistake.

There were nine stranded runners for the Tigers and the pitchers put 11 Hornets on base by either walking them or hitting them with a pitch.

“Our pitchers struggled throwing strikes,” Waynesville coach Scott Turner said. “That does make a difference.”

All of that aside, if it weren't for Hillcrest piling on seven runs in the fourth inning it could've easily been a different outcome Friday.

“The shame is that we let the game get away in that one inning,” Turner said. “We need to learn how to stop the bleeding. It's OK if they get one or two runs, but once they start putting three or four runs up, we've got to come together and refocus.”

Turner said he could chalk that up as one of the side effects of being a young team.

“You can't give the other team freebies and we gave them too many today. That's what it boiled down to.”