Ospreys suffer 1st loss of American Legion baseball season

sfastenau@beaufortgazette.comJune 10, 2014 

Beaufort High pitcher Mattison Pike pitches against Goose Creek High School batter Tyler Rio in a game at Beaufort High School baseball field on June 9, 2014.

THEOPHIL SYSLO — Theophil Syslo Buy Photo

Ouch.

The Beaufort Ospreys' perfect start to the American Legion League 1 schedule sputtered in the ninth inning Monday and crashed during a 13-12 loss to Goose Creek.

Post 9/207 led 12-8 entering the final inning at Beaufort High School. Goose Creek's two-out rally kicked off with Christian Sillampa's RBI-double.

A walk, a couple errors and another double later, Beaufort entered the bottom of the ninth inning trailing for the first time in the young Legion season.

"What the heck just happened?" Beaufort Ospreys coach Mike Smith said. "That's what I want to know."

Beaufort gets a break from the vanilla schedule Tuesday, driving to Lake City for a non-league game. The Ospreys return home Thursday for a third of four games with the rival Heat.

Before Monday, Beaufort had not faced much trouble.

The Ospreys combined for 27 runs and 27 hits the past two games but are now 3-1.

"That's pounding the ball," Smith said.

Ospreys' right-hander Mattison Pike was in line for the victory, pitching into the fourth inning before handing off to Carson Gregory.

A five-run second inning and three runs in each the third and sixth innings made it look like Beaufort would pull away. But Goose Creek wasn't done.

The visitors scored four in the sixth to pull within one and chase Gregory, the recent Beaufort High graduate headed to Winthrop. Thomas Smith, who had not pitched since the Ospreys' opener against the Heat, tried to finish off the victory but succumbed to Goose Creek's rally.

Mike Smith wanted to save Thomas Smith for the game at Lake City tomorrow. Thomas Smith had been out last week with the flu but was fine by Monday.

Some patchwork pitching is in store the rest of the week.

As the Ospreys stumbled to the finish, Mike Smith hollered for his team to get out of it, for someone to make a play.

The untidy finish made for grim faces postgame as Beaufort prepares for two more games this week.

The schedule might have a monotonous feel, but the Ospreys are focused on earning the best possible seed for the state playoffs, no matter how many times they have to beat the same two teams.

"That's what we want," Smith said. "We kind of stubbed our toe in that pursuit today."

The league season is at the halfway mark. Beaufort still plays the Heat and Goose Creek twice more each.

Follow assistant sports editor Stephen Fastenau at twitter.com/IPBG_Stephen

Goose Creek 13, Ospreys 12

Goose Creek 102 104 005 -- 13 12 0

Ospreys 153 003 00x -- 12 14 6

WP: Zac Owens 6 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 4 K, 8 H

LP: Thomas Smith 3 IP, 5 R, 3 ER, 5 H, 3 K

Top hitters: Goose Creek -- Owens 3 for 4, 2B, RBI. Ospreys -- Rome Wallace 3 for 5, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 SB; Carson Gregory 2 for 3, 2 2B, BB; Jesse Sanborn 2 for 4, 2 2B, RBI, 3 R.

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