MOUNT VERNON — Skylar Lawrence had a walkoff hit to left in the bottom of the sixth inning that helped propel the Brenneman Lumber baseball team to the 5-4 win over Griffin Insurance in the Mount Vernon Baseball Association City Tournament winner’s bracket finals.
Brenneman’s Caden Theibert had started the final inning with a bloop single into center field and then Lawrence calmly came up to bat. After the coach whispered instructions into his ear, he banged a hit into the outfield and drove in the winning run.
“They (Griffin) were probably thinking, (coach) was telling me to bunt and he’s not,” Lawrence said about what the coach told him. “You just gotta smack it and if you score Caden Theibert, the coach’s son, you win it all.”
The game-winner capped an impressive comeback for Brenneman, which had spotted Griffin four runs in the third inning and then scrapped for runs in the remaining part of the game.
“I kept telling the boys to chip away, inning by inning,” coach Kyle Theibert said. “We were losing, we just had to get one every inning. Start winning every inning. And then when it came down to it at the end, I had belief in our boys because we had our top 4-5-6-7-8 hitters coming up and I believe in those guys.”
Griffin took the early lead, scoring all of its runs in the bottom of the third inning. After Brenneman made a pitching change, the momentum shifted.
Ethan Waite, Jacob Morningstar and Maddox Rice all walked in consecutive at-bats for Griffin and then Zac Clow came to the mound to pitch with the bases loaded and no outs.
Collin McFarlane then doubled to left center and drove in two and a wild pitch then scored Rice and McFarlane and made the Griffin lead 4-1.
Immediately after Griffin scored its four runs, Brenneman started to rally.
Gage Stull walked in the third and then scored on a single to left center by Dominic Gerrero.
Brenneman then scored twice more in the four, which knotted the teams at four runs apiece.
In that fourth inning, Theibert stretched a single into a double then Lawrence’s groundout advanced him to third and Landon Byrnes drove him in with a bouncing single.
Grady Pope drove in Byrnes with the tying run later in the inning which set up the late-inning heroics by Lawrence.
In the loss, Griffin plays Ariel (how do we know that?) at Phillips Park at 6 p.m. today and the winner of that plays Brenneman for the championship on Thursday.