It took the Stow baseball team two innings to take control of its game Friday at Ellet.
The final five innings just delayed the inevitable — a Bulldogs victory.
Stow took advantage of several Ellet miscues and kept its record perfect with a 10-3 victory.
Ellet walked eight Stow batters and committed seven errors and one balk. The Bulldogs (4-0) led 9-1 after two innings with only two hits. The Orangemen (0-3) made six errors in the first two innings and walked five batters.
“It was an ugly game to say the least,” Stow coach Bryan Celik said. “This is a good win. We are not going to apologize for winning, but we have got to start doing some things better. We can’t take things for granted and we need to do the little things better.”
Stow sophomore Parker Henderson knocked in a run with a sacrifice fly in the six-run first inning and hit a two-run single in the three-run second inning.
“I was just looking for the right pitch to hit and I got it on those two at bats,” Henderson said. “We are coming together as a team. … We still need a lot of work, but we are headed in the right direction.”
Stow senior Nate McMaster pitched three innings and got the win. McMaster, a Walsh Jesuit transfer, allowed one run on two hits and struck out six.
“I just went out there and decided to throw strikes,” McMaster said. “I only threw one off-speed pitch the whole game. I just relied on my fastball.”
Ellet coach John Sarver said he was disappointed to see his team’s “bad mental errors” defensively, especially the ones committed by seniors. The Orangemen also had two pitchers exit the game with injuries.
The Orangemen outhit the Bulldogs 7-5 but Sarver expressed his concern of stranding too many runners on base.
Junior Mike Urban and senior Bryan Reginald started Stow’s first inning with walks. Senior Andrew Hurd loaded the bases with an infield single.
Following an out, junior Andy Mundorf walked to score Urban and Reginald scored on a Henderson sacrifice fly. Ellet’s defense then faltered to account for the next four runs when junior Alex Damschroder, sophomore Andy Wargo and senior K.C. Kolke each reached base for Stow on errors.
Reginald started the second inning by reaching base via an error, and then scored after an error. Henderson capped the inning with a single that scored junior Brian Groves and Mundorf.
“We took advantage of their mistakes,” Celik said. “When we got guys on base, we got them in early in the game. We need to remember that it is a seven-inning game and not lose focus when you jump out to a big lead.”
Stow scored its final run in the sixth inning when Damschroder knocked in Mundorf with a sacrifice fly.
“I see great things with this team,” McMaster said. “We have played great defense and we have a senior outfield, which is nice, and we have really stepped it up in the infield.”
Juniors James Taylor and Alex Haynes and sophomore Ryan Pitts pitched effectively in relief of McMaster.
The Bulldogs did not commit an error.
Ellet scored single runs in the first, fourth and fifth innings. Russell Kline hit two doubles and a single, scored two runs and batted in another. Cory Campano had an RBI double and Ryan Gerrow had an RBI single.
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.