Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Baseball playoff roundup: Carroll tops Marcus; Wakeland outslugs McKinney North
GRAPEVINE — Still building its identity with five players coming off a football state title, Southlake Carroll advanced in the Class 5A baseball playoffs with a 3-1 victory over Flower Mound Marcus in Game 3 of a best-of-3 bi-district series Saturday.
Carroll (20-10-1) scored three runs in the bottom of the first with an RBI single from Darien McLemore and a two-run double from left fielder Greg Maisto. Freshman pitcher Ben Leeper and junior Sean Thompson allowed only three hits and one run.
“We had to win two elimination games, and the players had a lot of confidence all through it,” 16th-year Carroll coach Larry Hughes said. “They had to come back from a very tough loss [in the opener]. These things aren’t easy to win, and they’re finding a way to do it.”
Carroll advanced to play Grapevine in the second round.
Marcus rallied for three runs in the bottom of the sixth in a Game 1 victory behind senior ace Colin Poche. Carroll evened the series with a 4-1 victory in Game 2.
Marcus started Game 3 with a 1-0 lead in the top of the first with an RBI single by junior second baseman Nick Lewis. Carroll’s Leeper got out of the inning without another run scoring by overcoming two walks and an error with two strikeouts.
Thompson finished the final four innings and allowed just one hit while getting out of a potential jam as Carroll junior third baseman Kenny Hill alertly tagged a base runner who overslid the base for the third out. Hill, Carroll’s quarterback who recently committed to Texas A&M for the Class of 2013, is one of four football players starting through the series.
Shortstop Ben Sego and center fielder Tyler Barnes were Carroll senior receivers, sophomore right fielder Drew Brown is a Carroll kicker, and senior lineman Austin Tyrone is a platoon starter at first base. As the No. 1 and No. 2 hitters, respectively, Brown and Sego led off the first with singles, and Carroll tied the score, 1-1, on a single by McLemore.
The left-handed Maisto, who got the pitching victory in Game 2, then sliced a double to left-center to score two runs and give Carroll its final two-run margin.
When Carroll reached the 2008 5A state baseball final, it had several football players on the roster. The latest Carroll playoff run will depend on its versatility and athleticism. Against Marcus, Sego took away two likely hits with plays going to the right and left, and Barnes added a diving catch in center to take away a hit in Game 3.
“We didn’t get the football players until mid-January, when they changed their schedules,” Hughes said. “They’re good athletes and good leaders, and it’s something we’re used to every year. We’re glad to have them.”
Frisco Wakeland 13, McKinney North 10: In Carrollton,Cameron Brockhoff’s grand slam highlighted a seven-run sixth inning, and Dan Harrington followed with a solo shot that sent Frisco Wakeland into the area round with a 13-10 win over upset-minded McKinney North in Game 3 of a Class 4A Region II Bi-District series.
Wakeland (23-9), ranked second in the state 4A coaches’ poll, won the series 2-1 and will face Bryan Adams (13-9) in next week’s area round.
Wakeland trailed 10-6 going into the sixth but got a quick run on Justin Swanner’s RBI single before registering its first out. Seth Mullins was hit by a pitch and Johnny Gonzales singled home Swanner to load the bases. Brockhoff’s home run traveled high over the left-field fence, completing Wakeland’s comeback from a 10-4 deficit only two innings earlier.
Harrington then lined the next pitch over the same fence for a 13-10 lead. McKinney North (19-10) put a man on third in the top of the seventh but could not score again.
The big inning was similar to Wakeland’s four-run first inning, in which Grant Devore’s double started a string of five consecutive hits. The double was one of only three extra-base hits among the 25 combined hits in the game, the others being the home runs.
McKinney North fought back from that early 4-1 deficit with eight runs in the second and third innings. Heath Beasley gave North a 7-4 lead with a bases-loaded, two-RBI single that went between the legs of Wakeland starting pitcher Willie Schwanke. Braden Fair and Montana Sadler had RBI singles to load the bases for Beasley.
The 13 runs matched Wakeland’s season high. It was Wakeland’s first time to score 10 or more runs in more than a month. The teams scored only four runs combined in the first two games of the series.
In other first-round games:
Plano 7, Keller 6: Michael Crawford’s two-out RBI double capped a six-run sixth inning as District 8-5A champion Plano rallied to sweep a best-of-3 series against Keller, the fourth-place team from 7-5A.
Plano (21-6-3) trailed, 6-1, entering the top of the sixth. But an RBI single by Cody Farhat, an RBI triple by Mitchell Hansen and an RBI double by Matt McLean helped Plano tie the score before Crawford delivered the game-winning hit that scored McLean.
Lake Highlands 8, McKinney Boyd 6: Sean Guion’s two-out, two-run double in the sixth inning drove in Chris Dyer and Alex Irion and gave Lake Highlands the victory in Game 3 of the best-of-3 series. With two outs and none on in the top of the sixth, Dyer doubled and Irion singled to set up Guion’s game-winner.
Dyer also homered in the game. Reed Thomas pitched 12/3 scoreless innings of relief for the win, and Michael Ketchmark earned the save by pitching 11/3 scoreless innings.
Arlington Martin 8, Odessa 2: Collin Day was 3-for-3 with two doubles, a home run and two RBIs to help the state’s top-ranked 5A team sweep its first-round series. Day — who was 6-for-6 in the series — also pitched a complete game Saturday and struck out eight to lead District 4-5A champion Martin (28-2-1) into the area round.
Trailing, 1-0, Martin scored three times in the third inning. Then clinging to a 3-2 lead, Martin added three runs in the fourth. Drew Dowdy helped pace Martin’s 11-hit attack, going 2-for-4 with three RBIs.
Colleyville Heritage 11, Midlothian 0: Colleyville Heritage scored nine runs in the fourth inning to break a scoreless tie en route to completing a two-game sweep with a five-inning win.
Cody Thomas was 3-for-4 with a home run and two runs for the state’s eighth-ranked 5A team, and Brad Piper pitched a three-hit shutout. Brian Parks added two RBIs and two runs for District 6-5A champion Colleyville Heritage (27-4), and Andrew Case drove in three runs.
Plano East 10, Keller Fossil Ridge 4: Plano East scored seven runs in the final three innings to win Game 3 of the best-of-3 series. Jacob De La Cruz was 2-for-4 with three RBIs for Plano East (19-13-1), and Nick Ramos went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs.
Grapevine 5, Cedar Hill 2: Grapevine used a pair of home runs and a complete game from Connor McGuire to beat Cedar Hill in a one-game playoff.
With the score tied at 2 going into the top of the sixth, Grapevine (19-10-1) was being three-hit by Caleb Hamrick. After a strikeout, McGuire began the rally by muscling a sinking line drive over the infield for a single. Brandon Koch took two balls before slamming a home run to left-center field to give Grapevine a 4-2 lead. Grapevine tacked on another run on Tyler Coolbaugh’s seventh-inning single.
The game resumed Saturday in the top of the second after lightning strikes Friday interrupted the game after one inning. McGuire did his part early, hitting a home run in the top of the second.
Sachse 6, W.T. White 2: Jeremy Hadley went 3-for-4 with two RBIs to help Sachse (24-8) advance with a Game 3 victory.
Kent Myers was 2-for-3 and scored three runs for Sachse, the No. 3 seed from District 10-5A, and Kaleb Greaux pitched a six-hitter. Trailing 1-0, Sachse scored twice in the bottom of the first to take the lead for good.
Hurst L.D. Bell 5, Mansfield Legacy 2: Gavin Gregory homered, and Trevor Podsednik doubled twice and drove in two runs as L.D. Bell (18-10-1) swept Legacy (22-10).
Temple 13, Mesquite 2: Cameron Dodd homered to help Temple sweep District 11-5A champion Mesquite.
Rockwall-Heath 16, Frisco 1: The state’s fifth-ranked 4A team rebounded from Friday’s shutout loss to dominate Game 3 of the best-of-3 series. Bret Boswell provided all the offense District 10-4A champion Rockwall-Heath (27-8) needed, going 3-for-4 with two doubles, a home run, three runs and four RBIs.
Jake Baxter limited Frisco to one run in the five-inning game and also went 3-for-4 with an RBI. Jake Bledsoe added two hits and two RBIs.
Frisco Centennial 14, Rockwall 1: The top three hitters in the lineup were a combined 9-for-11 with four home runs, eight RBIs and nine runs as Centennial (23-7) beat Rockwall (22-10) to sweep the series.