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Young players step up to lift Bucktail baseball to win

KEVIN RAUCH/Special to the Sun-Gazette Bucktail freshman Kyler Friese had a standout performance in Bucktail's 15-5 win over the Phoenix, a day that included a home run and this head-first slide to score underneath the tag by Sugar Valley pitcher Kayden Leigey.

FARWELL — Bucktail and Sugar Valley met up as each team was looking for their first win of the season. The Bucks are starting three freshmen all in the infield, but are led by Kyler Friese starting at the catcher spot. Those young players proved to be big factors as Bucktail claimed a 15-5 mercy-rule win after five innings.

Coehan Homan put the Phoenix on the board first when he knocked in Blaine Falk with an RBI single in the top of the first. Sugar Valley looked to continue the rally as Corbin Homan stood on third and took off on a Kayden Friese passed ball. Younger brother Kyler quickly retrieved the ball that was rolling out of the left-side batter box and jumped back over in front of the plate, tagging out Corbin Homan with a strong defensive effort.

The bottom of the first found Kyler Friese on third as he took off on a loose ball as this time the sprinting ninth grader proved too fast for Phoenix catcher Coehan Corbin with a head first slide tying the game, 1-1.

The score was tied in the bottom of the second until Bucktail senior Paul Risley crushed a ball into left center, good for a ground-rule double and giving the Bucks a led that they would never give back.

Sugar Valley trailed, 3-1, in the bottom of the second and had runners on third and second. But before any type of rally could take place, Kayden Friese picked up a strikeout, keeping his team on top.

The Bucks broke it open in the bottom of the third and for the third time Kyler Friese was about to make a big impact. This time the ninth grader took a Kayden Leigey offering and unloaded, knocking the ball over the left-field fence for a solo home run.

Gunner Sockman added a two RBI double as the Bucks took a commanding 8-1 lead.

Sugar Valley had their best inning in the top of the fourth paced by Blaine Falk’s two-RBI single and Corbin Homan’s RBI and run scored.

The Phoenix would make it an 8-4 game after the top of the fifth with drama looming. Starting Bucktail pitcher Kyler Friese would have to be pulled in the top of the sixth after 10 pitches.

The Bucktail offense however didn’t allow for the Bucks’ bullpen to become as issue as they rolled off seven runs to end the game by ten run-rule. Ashton Intallura picked up two of his four RBI’s in the bottom of the fifth and scored a run to help lead the attack.

“We played well today, we played to our ability today” said Bucktail coach Bill Probst. “They’re some growing pains with the freshman in the line-up but all three of them Kyler Friese, Johnny Green and Brett Mason all played well today, Kyler have just been phenomenal at the plate.

“Everyone stepped up today, everyone played team baseball. That’s how our wins will have to come this year with such a young team.”

Bucktail (1-2) will host Williamson on Saturday at noon.

Bucktail 125 07 — 15 7 0

Sugar Valley 100 31 — 5 5 0

W–Kayden Friese. L–Ceigey.

Top Bucktail hitters; Kyler Friese 1-3, HR, RBI, 3 runs; Mason 1-2, RBI, 2 runs; Kayden Friese 2-3, run; Gunner Sockma 2-3, 3 RBis, 2 runs; Paul Risley 1-2, RBI, run; Ashton Intallura 1-3, 4 RBIs, run; Cole Hillyer 1-3, run. Top Sugar Valley hitters: Corbin Homan 1-3, 2 RBIs, run; Blaine Falk 1-2, RBI, run; Ceigey 1-3; Coehan Homan 1-3, RBI, run; Kayden Weaver 1-3.

Records: BucktaiL (1-2). Next game: Williamson at Bucktail, Saturday, noon.

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