Thursday, 03 April 2014 15:24

Racers winning streak ends

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Going 5-2 after their last home game, the Newcastle Racers had the beginnings of a nice streak when they returned to the Racer baseball complex Monday, going 3-0 in their last three games.

It was not to be as the Racers fell 7-5 to Mt. Saint Mary's in extra innings Mar. 31 in Newcastle. 

It is the second loss to the Rockets (5-5) this season after a 5-3 loss Mar. 10. The game was moved to Newcastle after re-sodding at Mt. Saint Mary's forced the game's relocation.

The Racers (7-4) were riding high after their three-game road win streak, with the most recent victory coming Mar. 29 at Rush Springs.

"It was a good win," Newcastle Head Coach Mike Crossley said. "They were 12-0, but they got beat the night before we played them ... They were 25-6 last year and didn't graduate any kids. It was a game that scared me a little bit, I admit."

Crossley hailed relief pitcher Eric Strangefeld and batter Keith Tarver for the 10-5 win over Rush Springs, considering the game came the day after prom. 

Pitching remains a concern for Crossley as the Racers approach the midpoint of their season.

"We're awfully young on the mound," Crossley said. "Two of our main pitchers we used last year graduated, so it's a gradual process of building that pitching staff, making it better." 

Crossley also hopes that hitting improves with the changing seasons.

"As the weather warms up, the bats warm up," he said.

The Racers remain in healthy shape as they prepare for the Newcastle Invitational tournament, beginning when Newcastle takes on Little Axe 11 a.m. April 3 at the Racer baseball complex. 

Other teams participating include Latta, Classen SAS, Bridge Creek, Purcell, Christian Heritage and Community Christian School.

The Racers are 3-1 against the tournament field. Thursday will be the team's only meeting with Little Axe. The Racers lost 6-5 to Christian Heritage on the championship game of the Little Axe tournament Mar. 22, have notched two wins over Bridge Creek Mar. 7 and 20, and scored a 22-7 win over Community Christian Mar. 24.


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