Despite losing in the first round of the state baseball playoffs, first-year Bradwell Institute baseball coach Jeff Polk said he is pleased with his first season as head coach.
“We were one of only 32 teams that made it to playoffs in 5A, which is a feat within itself,” he said. “It is an improvement from last year, in which we didn’t advance to the postseason.”
The Tigers, who finished 9-15 overall and 7-7 in Region 3-AAAAA, lost two state-tourney games against Harris County last Friday night and were eliminated. Scores were 14-0 in five innings in game one and 12-0 in game two, 12-0.
“They hit the ball well,” Polk said. “Their pitching staff did very well against us and they made the routine defensive plays. Our pitchers struggled and we struggled at situational hitting, but overall I am proud of the team this year.”
In last Friday’s first game, Harris County had 11 hits, while BI mustered one hit.
Bradwell pitcher Ryan Desbiens tossed 2 innings, giving up seven hits and eight runs. He walked one and had one strikeout. Stephen Felton pitched one inning, giving up six runs, four hits and three walks.
In the second game, BI had five hits but also committed five errors, helping Harris County notch some runs.
Bradwell’s Chris Bell was 2 for 3, Desbiens was 2 for 4 and Maxwell Ashe was 1 for 2.
Sage Sammons started on the mound for game two, getting two strikeouts. He didn’t walk a batter, but allowed six hits and six runs. Bell came in and had one strikeout and two walks, while giving up three hits and two runs. Chris Nunn finished the game, tossing one strikeout and allowing three hits and four runs.
Bradwell will lose four starters to graduation this year, but the rest of the team projects to return next season with playoff experience under their belts. Polk said the Tigers will be ready for next season, but they will miss the leadership his seniors provided this season.
“I stressed to our guys the importance of improving so they may be able to reach their goal of succeeding in the postseason,” he said. “I am very proud of our seniors this year and the leadership they provided this year.”