BASEBALL: Port Charlotte wins another comeback game

By Pete Sisk, Sun Correspondent

CAPE CORAL — The crazy comebacks keep coming for Port Charlotte’s baseball team.

Three times in three days, the Pirates have had a lead, lost it, and won anyway.

Thursday night’s 6-4 win at Ida Baker moved Port Charlotte into a tie with Cape Coral for second place in District 6A-11, and quite likely the second seed in the upcoming district tournament.

Port Charlotte coach Rod Taylor, while he couldn’t be positive, believed his squad had the tiebreaker over Cape Coral (both teams are 8-4 in district, having split against each other).

That would mainly come into play should those two face each other at some point in the district tournament.

“It’s making me old, it’s making me gray, and it’s making me bald,” Taylor said of his team’s comeback streak, which began when it rallied to beat Ida Baker at home on Tuesday. “These kids, theyre showing me — they’re showing me what they’re made of. They look like a bunch of clowns out there, but they won’t quit.

“They got down again, and they just battled and battled. They find a way.”

Having seen a 3-0 lead turn into a 4-3 deficit by the time the top of the seventh inning rolled around, the Pirates did what they’ve done all week. They got back off the deck and won.

Catcher Romain Reynolds crushed a triple to straightaway center, scoring Matt Intihar with the tying run. Mitchell Derocher followed with a single to score courtesy runner Andrew Bennett.

And then the Pirates took advantage of Ida Baker mistakes. Matt LePoint reached on a strikeout-wild pitch-throwing error. With two out in the inning, he scored on an error by the Bulldogs’ shortstop to make it 6-4.

Despite two losses to Port Charlotte this week, Ida Baker had already clinched the top seed and a bye in the seven-team district.

As it stands now, should the Pirates be the second seed, they would host either North Fort Myers (3-9 in district) or Island Coast (3-8 and facing Cypress Lake) in the first round. Cape Coral would get the one of those two teams who finish sixth.

District play is over until the tournament, although there is one week of the regular season remaining.

Port Charlotte scored its first three runs in the third inning without benefit of a hit. The first two batters were hit by pitches, then moved up on a wild pitch. Consecutive Ida Baker errors by the third baseman scored two of the runs, and Jason James added an RBI groundout for a 3-0 lead.

Dominic Delgaudio, who had entered the game in relief of Derek Rack in the bottom of the fifth, wound up getting the win. Rack pitched 4. innings, giving up two runs on three hits and striking out five. Delgaudio allowed two runs in 2.1 innings on four hits while striking out three.

“Is this going to run out on us?” Taylor said. “I sure hope not. But we’re going to ride this as long as it stays with us.”

Port Charlotte 003 000 3 — 6 8 1
Ida Baker 000 022 0 — 4 7 5
WP: Dominic Delgaudio; LP: Cody Hill. Leading hitters: (PC) Romaine Reynolds 2-4, 3B, RBI. (IB) Matt McGarty 2-3, RBI. Records: Port Charlotte 14-8, 8-4; Ida Baker 17-6 9-3.

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