It’s been quite some time since Fayette won a baseball game, but that all became irrelevant when Tanner Wagner fired a first game five-hitter, then Shane Maginn capped a three-run rally with a one-out, run-scoring single in the bottom of the seventh to push the Eagles over the top in the nightcap, in a 6-4 and 9-8 sweep over Waite Saturday.
It was the first two wins of the season for the Eagles.
“This is very important,” Eagle coach Matt Maginn said after. “Tanner has been playing well every game and just to get that win is really big.
“We have been moving people around and finding people to play positions. Not playing last year really hurt and it’s just getting people in the right spots defensively.”
Waite scored first in the opener when Tino Canales bounced a single up the middle, stole second, went to third on an infield hit and scored on a ground out.
That would be the last threat for the next four innings as Wagner breezed through four hitless innings with nine strikeouts during those frames.
Fayette scored all they would need in the third, putting a four-spot on the board, thanks in most part to some shaky defense by the Indians.
Maginn reached on an error, Wagner looped a single into right center, and an error on Jayden Fairfield’s grounder tied the game.
Owen Lemley walked and when the Eagles worked the double steal, the throw attempting to get Fairfield got away and another run scored to put Fayette up.
Another misplay on Braxton Jacob’s bouncer, along with Tyson Bailey’s base hit, brought in two more Fayette runs.
Fayette picked up another in the fourth when Maginn singled and eventually scored on a wild pitch, and an insurance run in the sixth on Wyatt Mitchell’s triple into the right field corner and a passed ball.
“We put people in motion on the bases trying to make them make errors,” explained Maginn of making the most of his team’s five first game hits. “It seemed to work and get us where we needed.”
Waite got two on with two down in the sixth but Wagner got out of trouble, getting a bounce out force play to Skylar Lester at third.
Nolan Wagner’s two-run single in the seventh, plus Maginn’s throwing error behind the plate got Waite to where the tying run was at the plate.
Again Wagner got out of the inning, inducing a roller to the mound to end the game.
In the second contest, Waite marked single runs in the second and third off Maginn.
The Eagles came back with three in the bottom of the third to take the lead.
Hauk Brehm was plunked by a pitch and Luciano Millan reached on an error leading off the inning.
One out later Maginn rapped a run-scoring single to left center, then a throwing error and wild pitch cashed in two more tallies to put the Eagles up 3-2.
Waite’s Alex Rodriguez’ sacrifice fly knotted the game in the fifth; however, the Eagles reclaimed the lead in the bottom half when TJ Molitierno lashed a triple to left center scoring two runs.
Nick Hestel put the game in a deadlock again in the sixth with a two-out single that plated two runs for the Indians, and again Fayette garnered the advantage right back. Maginn again came up with the big hit, a double in the left center gap that scored Mitchell.
Maginn began to tire in the seventh as five straight Indians reached base — four on hits.
Calleb McCready’s RBI single brought home one run to tie the game, and Santos Hernandez delivered a base hit up the middle to push in two more that gave Waite an 8-6 lead.
Bailey came to the mound in relief and got Hestel on a second pitch bouncer to Lester to end the threat and keep the Eagles in striking distance.
It was Chase Moats that started Fayette’s game-winning rally with a base on balls.
Molitierno followed with a single and Lemley also drew a walk to load the bases.
Waite got one out when Lester grounded into a force at home, but when Millan grounded to short, the throw to second to try to turn a double play was wild and by the time the Indians got the ball back into the infield two Eagles had scored to bring Fayette even at 8-8.
Mitchell drew a walk to load the bases bringing Maginn to the plate and one more time the freshman came through with a solid single for his third hit and third RBI of the game for the walk-off win.
“That was shaky at the end but we had guys come up and get key hits and ended up scoring enough to win,” said coach Maginn. “It’s nice to see us come back like that.”
Bailey got the victory in relief for the Eagles who now play North Central in BBC play Tuesday and Thursday.