CRESTVIEW — Baker School baseball coach Adam Henry knows the Gators must get back to the game's fundamentals after a disappointing showing in the Justin Richards Scholarship Baseball Tournament.
The Gators, Tournament champions in 2013, ended tournament play Friday with losses to Northview (10-4) and Choctawhatchee (10-5) after falling to both of the Crestview teams on Thursday.
“We have to get back to the basics and, I guess, learn everything,” Henry said. “We’ve got to learn every little bitty thing we can.
“When we played well we got out of innings without any harm. If we learn from our mistakes we should be good. We just can’t keep repeating them.”
In Friday’s other games involving local teams Crestview Gray beat Northview 8-3 and Crestview Red beat Fort Walton Beach 4-0.
Northview 10, Baker 4
In what would become a recurring theme of the day, the Gators were their own worst enemies against the Chiefs. Five Baker errors played a role in eight of Northview’s 10 runs.
The Gators took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning thanks to a pair of Northview miscues. Hunter Cannon had the only Baker hit in the inning and scored a run. Dakota Blackburn was safe on an error and later scored as John Sackrider reached on an error.
The Chiefs tied the game with a pair of unearned runs in the bottom of the first inning.
Three Baker errors in the third inning aided Northview in scoring six runs. The Chiefs added two more runs in the fifth inning to take a 10-2 lead.
Nick Adams and Cannon had hits and scored for Baker in the sixth inning.
Choctawhatchee 10, Baker 5
A rough day for the Gators continued against the Indians as Baker's defense made nine errors.
All 10 of Choctaw’s runs were unearned as the Indians scored three runs in each of the first three innings and one in the seventh.
Baker scored three runs in the fourth inning without ever hitting the baseball. Walks to Blackburn, Colton Kilpatrick, Dillon Nixon, Logan Rickmon and Austin Walters, along with Sackrider being hit by a pitch, moved the Gators around the bases.
Blackburn, Sackrider and Kilpatrick scored for Baker.
Baker added two more runs in the seventh inning. Ryan Weidenhammer and Cannon had hits for the Gators in the seventh.
Gray 8, Northview 3
B.A. Larkins scored two runs as Crestview rolled past the Chiefs.
The Bulldogs took a quick 4-0 lead in the first inning.
Austin Polk was hit by a pitch to get things started. Corey Armstrong singled, Larkins was safe on a fielder’s choice and Jordan Chamberlain singled with one out to get the rally started.
All four players scored. Jeremy Willis had a RBI single in the inning.
Crestview added a run in the second when Bryant Berry singled, stole second and third and scored on a Polk hit.
Larkins scored his second run of the game in the fifth inning and the Bulldogs added two more in the sixth.
Chamberlain picked up the win for the Bulldogs. Ryan Weekley also worked two innings on the mound for Crestview.
Red 4, Fort Walton Beach 0
The Bulldogs' Colter Hancock was in midseason form on the mound as he went the distance for the shutout win.
Hancock held the Vikings to a pair of hits and didn’t allow a base runner to reach second base. He also struck out seven batters while giving up just one seventh-inning walk.
The Bulldogs gave Hancock all the offense support he needed with four runs in the third inning.
Rod Bouchard walked with one out to get the rally started. With two outs, Alik Whited was safe on an error to extend things and score Bouchard. He later scored on a wild pitch.
Hancock helped his cause with a hit, and Nate Gerard walked. A Travis Wiljakainen hit cleared the bases and put the Bulldogs up 4-0.
Bulldog Coach Tim Gillis was proud of Hancock’s performance on the mound.
“He got us through seven innings with a minimal pitch count,” Gillis said. ”He went a little bit longer than we probably wanted him to, but he wanted to stay in and he was fine.
“I’m real proud of all the guys. We played hard. That’s all we can ask them to do is to play the game the right way and we had some good results.”
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at email@example.com, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.