Frisco Wakeland rallies to beat Forney, Celina forces decider

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Class 5A

FRISCO — Addison Brown asked for time in a critical at-bat Thursday, but he was denied by the referee. Luckily for Brown and his Frisco Wakeland teammates, he was pretty good at regrouping for a split-second clutch swing.

Brown hit a double on the left field line with two outs to make Game 1 of the Class 5A Region II Finals series against Forney 1-1. Dylan Snead would follow with an RBI single to end an exciting rally in Wakeland’s 2-1 win at Riders Field.

Brown got his hit key two bagger on a 1-2 count.

“After I wasn’t given a time by the referee, I was nervous, but I thought, ‘Just get in touch.’ When I hit it, I knew they weren’t going to get it,” Brown said. “I’ve had a bit of luck, but I’ve worked hard to practice my hitting for something like this.”

Ryan Dickey replaced Forney starter Aiden Sims after Brown’s double, but Snead was able to send a 2-0 pitch over the head of Forney midfielder Josh Stephens. Snead said he was inspired by Brown and pinch-hitter William Schrotenboer, who had a two-out triple down the right field line in sixth field but was stranded when Sims regrouped to force a groundout. The seventh inning was also extended for Wakeland due to a Forney field error by a Conner Cassano grounder.

“What Will and Addison did inspired me. We got these hits that we knew we could hit this guy (Sims),” Snead said. “I got an inside fastball and when I hit it, I knew they weren’t going to catch it.”

Wakeland (24-13) is one win away from qualifying for the state tournament for a third time. Forney, ranked 6th in the Dallas Morning News Class 5A/Other area poll, fell to 28-10-1. Game 2 is scheduled for Friday at 7:30pm at Rockwall-Heath.

Holden Yaksick (9-2) threw a full game for the win, scattering four hits and two walks while striking three. Sims (9-3) took the loss despite a strong outing, hitting eight over 6 2/3 innings while conceding no earned runs, five hits and three walks.

Forney scored his run in the fourth inning on a Garrett Hendricks sacrificial fly to the right and hit courtesy of runner Alijah Merkson, who got to base thanks to a walk from the Sims.

Wakeland broke through in the seventh after failing to get runners into goal position in every previous inning except the second. In the fifth inning, Cassano hit a one-out double to center. Jackson Dillingham tried to score from the start, but Stephens regrouped and started a relay to get Dillingham out at home. Sims knocked out the next batter to escape the traffic jam.

Cassano had two hits for Wakeland. Trent McGee had two hits for Forney.

Rick Kretzschmar

Class 4A

FORNEY — Celina’s Kingston Hangartner hit a narrow three-run home run during a four-run fourth inning that proved crucial Thursday night when Celina forced a 5-2 win over Longview Spring Hill to force a crucial game three Class 4A Region II Graduate Series at North Forney High School.

Celina (35-4-1 overall) and Spring Hill (33-4 overall) will play the final of the series at 4pm today in North Forney, with the winner advancing to the 4A State tournament.

Celina made the most of her five strikes in the crucial win while leaning on a strong start from RJ Ruais to keep the season alive. Ruais threw himself into seventh place in winning, hitting 13 while conceding just two hits.

“RJ threw a great game and it was a game we had to have,” said Celina head coach Troy McCartney. “We swung the racquets better tonight and we didn’t make a lot of mistakes that they could exploit.”

Spring Hill took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning when Jax Stovall hit on a wild pitch with two outs from third.

Celina kept the pressure up with a trio of rallies in the first four innings, including a golden chance to score with the first- and second-place runners with no outs in the third inning. However, Spring Hill kept their one-run lead intact through three innings before Celina’s key fourth inning gave them the lead.

That big inning started with Jackson Rooker grabbing an out from a miss, followed by a single from Major Brinyen. An RBI brace from Caden Mitchell finished the game 1-1, setting the stage for Hangartner’s exploits.

Spring Hill cut the lead to 4-2 in the fifth after Stovall stole home with two outs, but a caught hitter later topped the inning.

Celina got that run back in the sixth, with a throwing error on a double steal allowing Rooker to score the final run of the game.

Spring Hill’s Easton Ballard went the distance in the loss, allowing five hits and four walks with eight strikeouts.

Robert Thomas

Argyle 8, Stephenville 1

Evan Brandt pitched six and a half innings with one-run ball as Argyle won the first game of his 4A Region I Finals series. Brandt hit two while giving up two hits and four walks.

Argyle (33-3-1) started three runs in the top of the third inning after a missed catch in left field led to an RBI double from JC Davis and a two-RBI single from catcher Hunter Sandifer. The Eagles batted for two more at the top of the fourth when a run was entered and another scored when shortstop Nate Barry dropped a throw to second base.

Brandt didn’t allow a hit through four innings of work before Stephenville (24-10-1) got a pair of singles in the top of the fifth. The Yellow Jackets ended up in second and third place when Brandt created a popout to end the inning.

The Eagles overran two more runs in the sixth on an RBI double from third baseman Micah Roberts and a wild throw at the first by the pitcher. Another Argyle run came in the seventh on an RBI single from first baseman Alex D’Angelo. Stephenville scored his lone run in his final ups on a base loaded by Pitch.

John Fields – Denton Record Chronicle


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