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Ida Baker edges Barron Collier 3-2

Bulldogs to now play for 6A regional crown

May 17, 2017
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

NAPLES One game away from the first state tournament berth in school history.

That's where the Ida Baker Bulldogs stand after hanging on for a 3-2 victory against Barron Collier Tuesday night in the Class 6A regional baseball semifinals.

The Bulldogs (23-6) will face Dunedin (21-6) for a trip to the state Class 6A tournament, which will begin June 1 at Fort Myers' Hammond Stadium.

Dunedin defeated Lake Wales 6-2 on Tuesday at Lake Wales.

The Cougars (15-14) had the tying run on third base when the final out was recorded.

"This time of year that's the kind of games you're gonna get," Bulldogs coach Bob VanDeventer said. "It comes down to the little things.

"We don't have to look pretty all the time. We just have to come up with one run more than they have. That's what we did tonight."

Chris Schrowe went the distance on the mound for Ida Baker, striking out seven while allowing four hits and not walking anybody. Both Barron Collier runs were unearned.

The Bulldogs got off to a quick start, thanks of Matt McGarty. Luke Endsley opened the game by reaching base, and McGarty homered to put Ida Baker up 2-0.

Barron Collier got a run on an error in the bottom of the third inning.

The Bulldogs returned the favor with an unearned run in the fourth, but left the bases loaded.

That run came without a hit. Mac Moise walked. Two Barron Collier errors and a wild pickoff attempt later, pinch runner Danny Stefanacci came home for a 3-1 lead.

That held up until the bottom of the seventh, when Barron Collier took the game to the bitter end. An unearned run with two outs got the Cougars within 3-2, and the tying run got within 90 feet of a tie before Schrowe closed it out.

So history is going to be made this coming Tuesday. For the first time, the Ida Baker baseball team will be playing in a regional final.

"We expect the crowd to be loud and in full force," VanDeventer said.

Could more history - a first berth in the state tournament - be next?

Hammond Stadium and Century Link Sports Complex, the spring home of the Minnesota Twins, is playing host to the tournament for the first time.

The last three FHSAA state baseball tournaments have been held at nearby JetBlue Park, spring home of the Boston Red Sox.



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