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Ironton can#8217;t hold lead in loss to Trojans

PORTSMOUTH — It’s beginning to sound like another fish story. You should have seen the one that got away.

The Ironton Fighting Tigers were on the verge of another win only to have Portsmouth rally for five runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to give the Trojans a 12-11 win Thursday in a Southeastern Ohio Athletic League game.

“We were up four runs in the bottom of the seventh and the wheels fell off and they fell off in a hurry,” Ironton coach Tobey Schreck said. “We’re 1-3 in the league we could easily be 4-0.

In the middle of five games in five days and ace Chad Miller nursing a sore elbow, Ironton also found its available pitchers at a premium. Schreck was forced to stay with starter Greg Kettel.

“The cold weather effected Greg. He usually has good control and he walked four and hit three batters,” Schreck said. “

Ironton (2-5, 1-4) took a 2-0 lead in the top of first inning.

Miller doubled, T.J. Keith drew the first of his three walks on the day and David Bridges had a run-scoring double. Nick Lewis walked and a run scored on Tanner Reed’s ground out.

Portsmouth came back with three runs in the bottom of the inning on three hits, a walk and a hit batsman.

The Trojans scored two more in the second inning to push the lead to 5-2.

Ironton got back on track in the fifth inning with three runs to tie the game.

Byron Brammer was safe on an error, Miller hit into a fielder’s choice, Keith walked and Nick Lewis smacked a two-run double. Jeremy Moore singled home Lewis to put Ironton ahead.

The Trojans answered with two runs in the bottom of the inning to go up 7-5, but Ironton countered with three runs in each the sixth and seventh innings.

In the sixth, Brammer doubled and scored on a hit by Miller who stole second and scored when Bridges reached on an error. Bridges eventually scored on a balk and it was 8-7.

The lead went to 11-7 in the top of the seventh.

Moore and Wes Runyon walked and Josh Pancake doubled home a run. The second run scored on a balk and Brammer reached on an error as a run scored.

Portsmouth mounted the winning rally in the bottom of the inning on a walk, a hit batsman, a fielder’s choice, another hit batsman, a two-run single by T.J. Arrowood, two straight Ironton errors and the winning RBI single by Matt Harcha.

The Fighting Tigers had 10 hits with Miller and Reed going 2-4 and Bridges 2-5.

Ironton hosts Gallipolis Friday in a league game.

Ironton2000333=11103

Portsmouth3200205=12113

Greg Kettel and Tanner Reed. John Harcha and Howard Harcha. W-J. Harcha (5-K, 7-BB). L-Kettel (3-K, 4-BB, 3-HBP). 2B-Ironton: Chad Miller, David Bridges Nick Lewis, Josh Pancake, Byron Brammer; Portsmouth: Walker, Howard Harcha. 3B-Ironton: David Bridges. Hitting-Ironton: Chad Miller 2-4, David Bridges 2-5, Nick Lewis 1-3, Jeremy Moore 1-3, Tanner Reed 2-4, Josh Pancake 1-4, Byron Brammer 1-4; Portsmouth: John Harcha 2-4, T.J. Arrowood 1-4, John Walker 2-4, Howard Harcha 3-5, Matt Harcha 2-3, Brian Estep 1-4.