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TALLMADGE -- Sometimes in high school baseball, teams' decisions are dictated by the schedule.
Such was the case last week for the Tallmadge baseball team -- though the Blue Devils were able to adapt very well.
On April 14, Tallmadge's offense led the way to a 14-7 win over Canton GlenOak. The game took place at Kent State University's Schoonover Stadium as part of the Cancer Awareness Classic.
On April 17, the Blue Devils purposefully used six different pitchers and got 13 hits to score a 9-6 win over Suburban League American Conference rival Barberton at Dave Young Field. They also defeated the Magics 17-7 April 13 on the road.
Then on April 18, host Tallmadge lost to American Conference foe Highland 5-4 in eight innings.
The Blue Devils record stood at 10-4 overall and 4-3 in the American Conference as of press time.
Clad in pink for the game with GlenOak, Tallmadge had plenty of heroes on offense.
Junior Phil Glasser finished with three singles and scored four runs, while Garrett Sands added three singles and two runs scored. Junior Jared Burick hit two singles, a double and drove in two runs, while Scott Seeker hit a two-run single.
All that run support helped junior Micah McGlaughlin get the win on the mound.
Blue Devils head coach Kenny Linn said he used his pitching staff by committee against the Magics because Tallmadge had to face a full week of league games.
"Sometimes, it's not a bad way to go, because when you're facing new pitchers every inning, you can't time them up," he said. "We kind of expected we could hit the ball and score some runs."
Burick started and pitched two scoreless innings, while junior Zach Boyd pitched a scoreless third inning.
Tallmadge's offense got to work early, as the Blue Devils put up three runs in the second and third inning off Barberton starter Zach Scalf.
Burick opened the second inning with an infield single, followed by a solid single from designated hitter Josh Taylor and a bunt single from catcher Rich Eyre. Burick then scored on a throwing error.
Left fielder Sam Seeker then smacked a two-run single to make it 3-0.
In the third inning, Burick reached base on an error, followed by back-to-back run-scoring doubles from Taylor and Eyre. Sands then hit an run-scoring single to plate Eyre and make it 6-0.
While the Blue Devils' pitching and hitting were on point, Tallmadge's defense failed it a bit, as all six of the Magics' runs were unearned.
"it was a bit ugly out there," Linn said. "There was some bad baseball and some good baseball for us."
The worst of it came in the top of the fourth.
With one out, two walks and two Blue Devil errors allowed Barberton to get on the scoreboard against Glasser.
Barberton then got its biggest hit of the night, as left fielder Zach Saunders hit a three-run double. A run-scoring single from second baseman Brandon Seiter scored Saunders and allowed the Magics to cut the lead to 6-5 midway through the fourth inning.
After the fourth, however, Tallmadge's defense tightened up, as Sam Seeker and Cam Knutty each pitched a scoreless inning.
Meanwhile, the Blue Devils got three more runs in the bottom of the fifth.
Taylor led off the inning by reaching on an error and scored on a run-scoring single from Eyre. Sam Seeker then hit a double to the fence in left, followed by a run-scoring ground out from Sands.
Glasser then put down an run-scoring bunt single to score Sam Seeker and make it 9-5 after five innings.
The Magics' last hope came in the seventh when shortstop Hayden Murphy walked, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on an error. However, Taylor struck out Barberton left fielder Jacob Chisnell to end the game.
Although Tallmadge pitching gave up seven walks, it also gave up only two hits while striking out nine Magics.
The game against the Hornets was competitive.
The Blue Devils were able to prolong the game by scoring in the bottom of the seventh, but Highland scored the winning run in the top of the eighth.
McGlaughlin (1-1) took the loss in relief.
Scott Seeker belted a two-run home run in the loss, while Burick added a double, a single and a run scored.
On April 13, Burick got the win on the mound to improve to 5-0.
Eyre finished with three hits, including a double, and two RBIs and Glasser had three hits. Sam Seeker finished with two hits, including a double, and two RBIs and Taylor had two hits, including a double. Seth Gergely also had two hits.
Tallmadge were scheduled to play its rematch at Highland April 20 in Granger Township as well as host Canton South April 21, but results were not available at press time.
The Blue Devils are set to entertain American Conference rival Revere April 25 and travel to Revere April 26. First pitch both days is scheduled for 4:30 p.m.
Tallmadge is set to visit Massillon Jackson April 28 (7 p.m.) and Suburban League crossover foe Wadsworth April 29 (4 p.m.).