TROY — Greenville Legion Post 140 came up one run short on the road in a 4-3 loss to Troy Legion Post 43.
“I’m always proud of aggressive play. We will continue to play aggressive and come districts, teams will have to adjust to us,” Greenville Legion Post 140 head coach Dr. Thomas Martinez said. “We are on the radar.”
Logan Elmore (Tri-County North) led off the top of the first inning for Greenville with a walk followed with a walk to Cole Ward (Greenville).
An unsuccessful attempted steal of third had Post 140 looking at one out with Ward standing on first.
A steal of second by Ward was followed with Ward sliding hard into third and racing home on a passed ball on the play, giving Greenville a 1-0 lead.
Post 43 put its first runner on in the bottom of the first with a hit batsman and moved to second by way of a Greenville balk, putting a Troy runner in scoring position with no outs.
A groundout to Austin Creager (Anna) at first, a pop up to Brad Caudill (Fairlawn) in foul territory at third and Cole Ward tracking down a fly ball to center field for the third out kept Troy off the board.
Tanner Maples (Tri-Village) reached on a Troy error followed with a walk to Caudill with both runners moving up on a passed ball at the plate, putting Post 140 runners on second and third with no outs.
Greenville took a 2-0 lead with Maples racing home on a passed ball.
Troy went down in order in the bottom of the second with a fly to Ward in center, a groundout to Cole Burell (Arcanum) at short and Austin Weimer (Greenville) picking up his first strikeout of the contest.
Carson Stump (Mississinawa Valley) lit up the scoreboard with a two-out line-drive home run over the left field fence, upping Greenville’s lead to 3-0.
Weimer picked up his second strikeout to open the bottom of the third inning followed with a fly to Elmore in right, a hit batsman and the third out coming on a fly ball to Ward in center.
Greenville went down in order in the top of the fourth while Troy was putting a run on the board in the bottom of the inning with a sacrifice fly for a 3-1 score.
Post 140 got a two-out fifth-inning Jamie Riffel (Houston) walk followed with a single to right off the bat of Ward only to be stranded with Troy coming to the plate.
Greenville kept Troy off the board in the bottom of the inning with a popup to Bailey Haworth (Greenville) behind the plate, Creager making a diving catch on a smash to first and throwing to Weimer covering first and a fly ball to Ward.
An Austin Reedy (Piqua) infield single was all Post 140 could put on base in the top of the sixth while Troy was cutting the score to 3-2 in the bottom of the inning, taking advantage of a Greenville balk.
With neither team able to dent the seventh inning plate Greenville came to bat in the top of the eighth clinging to a 3-2 lead.
Post 140 went three-up and three-down in its half of the eighth with Troy taking advantage of a Greenville error to knot the score at 3-3 heading to the ninth inning.
“You don’t win or lose games in one play,” Martinez said. “It takes consistent play throughout the game … a dropped ball, a bad pitch, a missed sign in the fifth or sixth adds up when you play at this level.”
Maples put a two-out charge in a long fly ball to the wall in left field only to be tracked down for the third-out, bringing Post 43 to the plate in the bottom of the inning.
Troy took used a single, a walk, a passed ball and an error to push across the winning run in its final plate appearance, taking the contest 4-3.
“Continuing to lose one- and two-run games against this level of established competition is great for a new program,” Martinez said. “Wins and losses can be seen by the average fan in the stat line, but in a first-year program we look at victories throughout the season.
“These boys are winners because they take the field with class, dignity and pride every time,” Martinez added.