The Smyrna High School baseball team started Thursday’s game to Milford down 3-0 after the first two innings; however the Eagles battled back to take their first win of the season 13-4 over the Buccaneers.
Smyrna was down 3-0 when the Eagles entered the bottom of the second inning. With runners on first and second, Smyrna’s Dario Anderson hit a sacrifice bunt to move Jared Gills and Shawn Dulin to second and third respectively. Thomas Penuel singled in Gillis to make the score 3-1. Justin Bowens followed with an RBI single to center field that scored Dulin, bringing the score to 3-2.
Following a scoreless top of the third inning, the Eagles fought back in the bottom of the third. Ryan Seymour reached base on an error and then stole second base. Nicholas Macey bunted his way on to first base but moved to third base following a throwing error, the hit scored Seymour from second base and tied the game at 3-3.
The Eagles took the lead when Macey scored following a ground out to second base by John Richardson. The hit gave the Eagles a 4-3 lead, one they never gave up. Smyrna scored three more runs in the inning, three more runs in the fourth inning, two runs in the fifth and one run in the sixth inning.
Milford tried to make up the difference but failed, scoring only one more run in the game in the fourth inning.
Smyrna pitcher John Richardson finished the game with eight strikeouts while only giving up three hits; three of the Buccaneers four runs were unearned.
The Eagles were lead offensively by Dario Anderson and Jared Gillis, both of which had two RBIs and two hits. Justin Bowens contributed two RBIs.
The game was riddled with errors on both sides of the field as Smyrna ended the game with four errors and Milford with six errors.
Smyrna coach Mike Henderson said the win was a great way to start the season.
“We were down 3-0 and the boys did a great job of coming back. I was actually impressed,” Henderson said.
When asked what he told the players to fire them up after falling 3-0, Henderson said he didn’t have to do anything.
“I didn’t tell them anything. We’ve gone over it before, we told them before the game to ‘Keep at them,’” Henderson said. “They believe in themselves, which is key. I didn’t haven’t to do anything.”
Henderson said Richardson had a great game. The team hit well and did the other little things like bunt and steal to win the game.
“We took advantage of the opportunities we had especially against a great team like Milford,” Henderson said.
He said the one weakness for the Eagles in the game was defense; Smyrna had four errors on the day.
“I don’t know if it was because of the cold weather or first-game jitters but I expect our defense to be a little better than that,” Henderson said.
The Eagles will be back on the playing field with a home game Saturday, March 29 vs. A.I. DuPont at 12 p.m.