XENIA — The Xenia Scouts have been a Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League team that has pounced on most of its opportunities this season. Tuesday night on Grady’s Field, the Scouts took some seventh inning opportunities and knocked the Hamilton Joes out of the playoffs.
Trailing most of the night, Xenia scored five runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to rally past the Joes 5-3.
With one out, Mac Seibert drew a walk. Michael Frigon came in to pinch-run for Seibert and quickly stole second base. Isaac Holt was then hit by a pitch to put Scout runners on first and second with one out.
Hamilton assistant coach Rick Blyberg went to his bullpen and brought in lefthanded thrower Sam Hunter to face Xenia pinch hitter Jordan Stading. The University of Houston product blooped a single into left field to load the bases for hot-hitting Luke Ortel.
Ortel had singled twice in two previous at-bats, and his hot streak continued against Hunter. Ortel doubled down the right field line to score Frigon and Holt with the tying runs.
But Xenia wasn’t done.
Stading raced home with the go-ahead run on a wild pitch, and Ortel moved to third on the same play. Lead-off hitter Clayton Brandt drew a walk. Then, Lincoln Reed’s pinch-hit groundout enabled Ortel to come home from third.
Brandt then scored from second on Andrew Carrillo’s liner into left field.
Wright State’s Brad Macciocchi drew a walk with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, and Zach Hummel tripled to score Macciocchi with the Joes’ third run of the night, but Hamilton couldn’t muster anything else.
Brett Ebers faced one batter in relief of Scouts starter Lucas Hamelink and was credited with the win.
With the win, Xenia now hosts the no. 2-seeded Southern Ohio Copperheads for today’s first game of the three-game playoff semifinals. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Xenia’s Grady’s Field, on the Athletes In Action sports complex.
It could be the final home game of the season for the Scouts.
In the night’s other GLSCL playoff game, the fifth-seeded Licking County Settlers upset the no. 4 Cincinnati Steam, 2-0. The regular season champion Lima Locos will play at 7 p.m. today against the Settlers, in Newark, for the first game of that three-game semifinal series.