Blue Sox win, but are eliminated from SpamTown Challenge

Published 3:15 pm Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Austin Blue Sox did their part by beating Prescott 6-1 in the last day of pool play at the SpamTown Challenge in Marcusen Park Saturday.

But after the Chicago Wildcats beat Cold Spring the Blue Sox were eliminated. The Wildcats won the tie-breaker in Pool B as they beat Austin (12-1 overall) on the first day of pool play.

Prescott pitcher Corey Seifert struggled with control from the start as he walked four Blue Sox and hit another batter in the first inning. Dan Swift had a big two-run double to deep center and Josh Kunze drew a walk to score another run and put Austin up 3-0 after one.

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“We watched (Seifert) in the bullpen and he was throwing a lot of off-speed stuff with a real high leg kick,” Kunze said. “We figured they’re in a situation like a lot of teams in the tournament where it’s their third game in two days and they’re probably not stashing their ace away. They’re probably throwing one of their lesser guys, so we had to be patient.”

Duell Higbe struck out six in four inning for the Blue Sox as he walked away with the win. He walked three but allowed just two hits before being relieved due to back pain.

“We went into the game knowing that we needed help m (from Cold Spring) to move on. We just said let’s take care of our end and if we would’ve advanced (to the final four) we would’ve been in great shape for a two game tourney,” Kunze said. “We would’ve had Zach Vlietstra, Mitch Jaeger Brian Voigt to throw and Joe Huffman could’ve thrown some bullpen duty.”

Halfway through their contest with Prescott, it was announced that Chicago had beaten Cold Spring 8-5 which eliminated Austin from Sunday’s round. So Kunze got in many of his back-ups over the next couple of innings.

“Once we found out that we were eliminated we tried to take care of our team and reward the guys for showing up with playing time but we were still trying to win,” Kunze said.

Each team walked nine batters in the game for a grand total of 18 walks on the night.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E

Pirates 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 2

Blue Sox 3 1 0 0 1 1 X 6 4 2

Blue Sox pitching: Duell Higbe (W), 4 IP, 2 H, 3 BB, 1 ER, 6 K; Zach Vlietstra, 2 IP, 0 R, 4 BB, 4 K; Brian Voigt, 1 IP, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K

Blue Sox hitting: Aaron Port, 0-for-3; Joe Kroc, 1-for-2, 2 R, BB; Casey Toops, R; Dan Swift, 1-for-2, double, 2 RBIs, R; BB; Pat Wolard, 0-for-3, RBI; Higbe, 0-for-1, RBI, BB; Voigt, 0-for-2, RBI, BB; Josh Kunze, 0-for-1, RBI, BB; Brandon Rector, 1-for-2; Nate Johnson, 0-for-1, BB; Winston Smith, 0-for-1, BB, R; Vlietstra, R, SB, BB; T.J. Parlin, 0-for-1, Mark Harber, 0-for-1; Nels Nelson, 1-for-1; Mitch Jaeger, BB; Jamie Pratt, 0-for-1; Ryan Palmer, 0-for-1

Pirates pitching: Corey Seifert (L), 5 IP, 3 H, 7 BB, 5 ER, 2 K

Pirates hitting: Alex Ross, 0-for-3, BB; Dillon Powell, 1-for-4; Chris Terrazas, 0-for-4; Nick Johnson, 1-for-4, double; Brady Randolph, 1-for-2, 2 BBs; Jim French, 0-for-1, RBI, 3 BBs; Brian Johnson, 0-for-1, 2 BBs; Ben Krings, 0-for-3; Matt Forincek, 0-for-2, BB