Prospect League

Gems' rally falls short in loss to Sliders at home

By FRANK CASH
Sports Writer | 217-221-3376
sports@whig.com | @whigsports
Posted: Jul. 15, 2017 12:01 am Updated: Jul. 15, 2017 11:15 pm

QUINCY -- The Quincy Gems gave their fans something to make some noise about Saturday night.

After trailing Springfield by five runs after 5 1/2 innings, the Gems scored four runs in the next two innings. An eighth-inning home run by Springfield's Hanz Harker turned out to be a crushing blow in a 6-4 Prospect League loss at QU Stadium.

"It was one of those typical baseball games," Gems right fielder Brad Harrison said. "You battle and you battle, you get back in it and then it doesn't come out your way. But rallying and scoring some runs late may help our confidence a little bit."

For Quincy, it was better than some of the lopsided losses it has been dealt this summer.

"You just have to go out and keep plugging away and give the team everything you've got," said Michael Nielsen, who started at first base and pitched the seventh and eighth innings. "That's all you can do, and you hope games like these will start going our way."

The Gems' big inning came in the bottom of the sixth when they took advantage of four Springfield errors.

Drue Galassi led off with a walk, stole second, moved to third on Harrison's groundout and scored on Dalton Schumer's sacrifice fly.

Cody Birdsong reached on a two-base throwing error by third baseman Drew Harper and was singled home by Nielsen, who wound up at second after right fielder Jared Kengott misplayed the ball.

Nielsen scored to cut the lead to 5-3 when shortstop Kendall King was charged with two errors -- bobbling Kyle Burnett's groundball and throwing the ball over first base.

"You get opportunities like we did, and you have to take advantage of them," Harrison said. "That's what it comes down to."

Quincy (13-29) scored one more run in the seventh when Harrison doubled off the left-field wall to score Tyler Engel from first base. The Gems had only one more base runner -- Burnett, who singled to lead off the eighth.

Five Gems shared the pitching duties. Michael Starcevich pitched the first two innings, followed by Dylan Chisholm for three and EJ Ramos for one. After Nielsen left the mound, Ben Whetstone -- another position player -- threw the ninth.

"It's still the same if you're just a pitcher, or you start at another position and go in to pitch," Nielsen said. "You try to get outs. You don't get outs, you're not going to stay out there very long."

The Gems play at 4:30 p.m. Sunday at Danville before returning home to play Terre Haute at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday. After that, it's five road games in as many days for the Gems.

"We just have to go out and play, no matter if we're at home or on the road," Quincy co-manager Adam Hightower. "We've got the framework in place. We've got the guys who can go out and play. We just need to put it all together."

Sliders 6, Gems 4

Springfield Quincy

ab r h bi ab r h bi

King ss 5 0 2 2 Crowl ss 5 0 1 0

Harker cf 4 3 3 1 Galassi cf 4 1 0 0

Bolt lf 4 0 0 0 Harrison rf 4 0 1 1

Dunham c 3 0 1 0 Schumer 3b 3 0 1 1

Wehde dh 5 1 2 1 Birdsong dh 2 1 1 0

Hansen 1b 5 0 0 0 Whetstone 1b-p 0 0 0 0

Harper 3b 3 1 1 0 Nielsen 1b-p 3 1 1 1

Kengott rf 5 1 2 0 Burnett lf 3 0 1 0

Strebin 2b 3 0 1 1 Crook c 0 0 0 0

Emanuel ph-c 4 0 0 0

Engel 2b 4 1 1 0

Totals 37 6 12 5 Totals 32 4 7 3

Springfield 001 211 010 -- 6

Quincy 000 003 100 -- 4

E -- King 3, Hansen, Harper, Kengott, Galassi, Emanuel. LOB -- Springfield 11, Quincy 9. DP -- Springfield 3, Quincy 2. 2B -- King 2, Harrison. HR -- Harker. SF -- Schumer. SB -- King, Harker 2, Bolt, Galassi, Emanuel, Engel. CS -- Kengott, Birdsong.

IP H R ER BB So

Springfield

Hart W,3-5 5 2-3 4 3 1 4 2

McMann 1 1-3 2 1 1 2 2

Pazik S,4 2 1 0 0 0 1

Quincy

Starcevich 2 2 0 0 1 2

Chisholm L,0-1 3 6 4 4 5 3

Ramos 1 3 1 1 0 0

Nielsen 2 1 1 1 0 3

Whetstone 1 0 0 0 0 1

WP -- Hart 3, McMann, Chisholm. HBP -- by Whetstone (Harper).

Umpires -- Plate, Mike Hirstein; Bases, Patrick Weber. T -- 3:15.