It’s not the way an author would have written it, but the Brazos Valley Bombers will take the story all the same.
The Bombers came from behind with three runs in the ninth inning to steal a 5-4 win from the Colleyville LoneStars at Brazos Valley Bank Ballpark Thursday night. The game was decided when LoneStars second baseman Scott Lawson made two errors on one play: one fielding a ground ball that should have ended the inning but instead allowed Keith Stein to reach base safely, and the other on a wild throw home when TJ Mittelstaedt scored from second with the winning run.
The inexplicable play capped a ninth inning that saw the Bombers score three runs, none of which was earned. Daman Aaron got things rolling when he was hit by a pitch with one out. Chris Wallace then gave the ball a ride to right center, where Colleyville right fielder Zak Presley tracked the ball down then dropped it, leaving Wallace at second and Aaron at third. With Wallace now representing the tying run in scoring position, head coach Kevin Moulder sent in the speedy Kyle Sisney to pinch run.
Ryan Weber followed with a long fly out to left that scored Aaron and cut the lead to 4-2, but also left the Bombers with one out remaining. With the pressure on, Mittelstaedt came through with his first hit of the evening, a double off the wall in right field that scored Sisney and tied the game.
Which brings us to the final play of the night. Stein hit a roller that Lawson should have handled easily, but instead he bobbled it and had no chance to catch the swift Stein at first. When he turned his attention to Mittelstaedt, he saw that the Bombers second baseman was rounding third with a full head of steam, gunning for home. Again, it should have been a routine play for Lawson, but he lobbed the ball over the catcher’s head, allowing Mittelstaedt to trot home with the winning run.
Earning the win for the Bombers was reliever Tyler Davis (2-0), who delivered a gutsy 4.1 innings out of the bullpen. Davis shut down a Colleyville rally when took over for starter John Touchton in the fifth inning, then allowed just an unearned run the rest of the way. Davis struck out four and walked two, surrendering one hit. Touchton lasted 4.2 innings, giving up eight hits and three runs, two of them earned. He walked three and struck out six.
The two teams traded unearned runs in the first inning of a game that saw them combine for nine errors, four of them by the Bombers. After Colleyville scored in the top of the first, an RBI single by Mark McGonigle tied the score. The LoneStars posted two in the fifth to take a 3-1 lead before Davis came on and snuffed out the rally.
The B’s answered with a run of their own in the home half of the fifth. Aaron led off with a walk, then stole second and moved to third when Wallace grounded out. Weber bounced to the third baseman, who couldn’t field it cleanly and let Aaron score to make the score 3-2.
Colleyville responded with a run in the sixth inning, and the score remained 4-2 until the dramatic final inning.
The first six players in the Brazos Valley batting order picked up hits, led by McGonigle’s 2-for-3 outing. Mittelstaedt and Aaron each scored a pair of runs.
The win keeps the Bombers in second place in the Speaker Division and just a half-game behind the Coppell Copperheads, who also won Thursday night. The LoneStars remain in third place and slid a game and a half behind the Bombers. The top two teams from each division qualify for the TCL playoffs.
The Bombers homestand concludes Friday night with an evening that might just be the B’s biggest blockbuster to date. After setting the league single-game attendance record on Opening Night, the Bombers have seen the mark taken back by the McKinney Marshalls. The B’s have vowed to write a new record in the books on Friday, July 20, and need the help of Bombers fans everywhere. The team wants to pack the park and has booked not one, but two big promotions to make it possible. Friday will be Fireworks Friday, so the game will be followed by a spectacular fireworks show. During the game, Reggy! The Entertainer, the biggest, baddest, purplest party dude on the planet, will visit to make it a night to remember.