Bulldogs survive late rally, wind for victory against Legend

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With a stiff, northerly wind blowing in the pitchers’ faces April 7, it was the sort of blustery day that could make Winnie the Pooh smile.

Brighton’s sixth-inning rally was more than enough to make Andrew Schmeh and his coach, Justin Stringer, beam from ear to ear.

Schmeh’s two-run single gave BHS the lead for good over Legend High School. Isaac Rodriguez added a two-run double, and Bryce Peterson added a scoring fly ball to give the Bulldogs a 7-6 win.

BHS had to survive a rally by the Titans in the top of the seventh before the celebration could start. With two out, Connor Boyd singled home a run, and Kai Wagner followed with a two-run home run. Rodriguez gave up a single before recording the third out.

“We believe in each other a lot,” Stringer said. “We’re a small group, and that’s by design. They outnumbered us 2-to-1. There’s strength in our small numbers.”

Eddy and Brandon Stricklin drove in runs in Brighton’s half of the first inning. Cam Cartwright was responsible for the Titans’ first two runs, including a home run in the fourth inning. Wagner homered in the sixth inning to forge a 3-all tie.

“If we can find a way to close the door, find me a Craig Kimbrel, we’d be set,” Stringer said. “Obviously, there’s going to be a drop-off from Brok. He’s the stallion out there. Our bats are a strength. Rodriguez is a top-notch shortstop. Bryce puts together good at-bats. Pitching is a strength. We just have to learn how to close games.”

Eddy picked up the win for BHS. He struck out 10 over six innings. Legend’s Reece Wagner struck out nine in five-plus innings.

“Both pitchers were really good,” Stringer said. “They are all-state caliber type arms. The score was not indicative of how well the game was played. I thought the game would be more of a 3-2, 4-3 game, even with the wind blowing out at 30-plus mph. Brok got a little tired at the end. Their guy got a little tired in the sixth inning. Luckily, we managed to find some hits in that inning.”

BHS entered this week’s schedule with a record of 7-3. Two of those losses came in the last inning of those games.

“I think we are one of the best teams in the state. I think they are one of the best teams in the state,” Stringer said. “We have to play teams like this if we’re expecting to win at the end. We’ve provided ourselves against top-level competition. We’re playing all the big boys, and I think we’re one of the big boys.”

Brighton High School baseball, Legend High School baseball, Winnie the Pooh

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