WARNER, Okla. — Forsgren manager Shea Hamilton wasn't completely overcome with frustration following Friday's 7-6 loss to the Russellville Pirates.
Not that he was OK with a bitter 7-6 loss to the Russellville Pirates.
Hamilton stands firm in his belief that a hard schedule will have his team ready for the upcoming state tournament.
The Sportsman (11-11) split two games at the Rusty Fulps Memorial Classic at Perry Keith Field at Connors State — coming from behind to beat EAP (Little Rock) before succumbing to the Pirates.
"I was proud of the way we fought back," Hamilton said following the team's loss to Russellville. "Their pitcher (Cade Shrum) did a really good job after giving up three unearned runs in the first inning, just coming out and throwing strikes and keeping us off balance. (But) despite that, we came back and gave ourselves a chance to come back there at the end."
Fosrgren's Cole Davis, whose two-out RBI single led to three eighth-inning runs and a 7-4 victory against a good EAP squad, took a 3-2 lead into the fifth inning of Friday's game before the Pirates rallied with four runs. They added an insurance run in the sixth that proved to be the difference.
Forsgren, which faces OBA Elite today at 1:30 p.m. at Warner High School, rallied for three two-out runs in the seventh before a pickoff play sealed their fate.
Shrum, who frustrated Forsgren with a dose of off-speed pitches for much of the game, was a strike away before having to hold his breath. The Greenwood senior, who figures to challenge for pitching time on a Bulldogs' roster already loaded with star arms next season, struck out three and walked one.
After hitting pinch-hitter Sam Byers, which turned the lineup over, Kadin Hyatt singled to right to load the bases for Joe Huck, who lined an RBI single to right to cut the lead to 7-4.
Tatum Loman's third hit of the game, a hard single to center, drove in two more runs to chase Shrum.
Now, down just a run, the Sportsman were on the cusp of a dramatic comeback before Huck strayed too far from second and was caught in a run-down that ended the game.
"We've played a really hard schedule; we've not play many double-A teams this year, and when we have we've got a really good record against them," Hamilton said. "We've put a really difficult schedule in front of them. They've gone out and competed really well. We've got some really good things with this team, we just need to make sure we put it all together."