PLAINVIEW-In three different innings, the Borger Bulldogs loaded the bases with opportunities to have big innings, but the team managed to get just one run across home plate through five innings of play.
But in the other dugout, the Lubbock Cooper Pirates used a big fourth inning to score nine runs on their way to defeating Borger 12-1 in game one of the best-of-three 3A Regional Quarterfinal Playoff Series at Wayland Baptist in Plainview.
On Friday evening, the Borger Bulldogs struggled to get anything going at the plate, despite some control issues by Pirate pitchers, managing only two hits off Nolan Savage and J.D. Beard.
Bulldog senior pitcher Hunter Hertel got off to a good start by striking out three Pirate batters in the top of the first inning.
However, starting in the second and third innings, the Pirates started to find their swing, scoring runs on a RBI double by Ryan Hixson and a solo homerun by Steven Hart to give Lubbock Cooper a 0-3 lead.
Borger had the opportunity to get something going in the bottom of the second inning, after a single by junior Clay Ellis loaded the bases for the Bulldogs with no outs. However, the Bulldogs came away empty-handed with the Pirates making the plays they needed to get off the field, including a tag out at home plate for the third out of the inning.
The top of the fourth inning started good for the Bulldogs with Hertel striking out the first Pirate batter.
But a hit batter and a walk quickly allowed the Pirates to load the bases, setting up Pirate sophomore Chandler Patterson to hit a grand slam to give Lubbock Cooper a 0-7 lead.
Before the Bulldogs could get off the field in the inning, five walks and three base hits brought in five more Pirate runs to make it a 0-12 game.
In the bottom half of the inning, control issues by Savage loaded the bases for the Bulldogs. However, the Bulldogs could not take advantage of the Pirate pitching issues as the lone Bulldog run would score on a walk to give what would ultimately be the final score 1-12.
Hertel took the loss on the mound for the Bulldogs by going three and 1/3 innings giving up 13 hits, six strikeouts, four walks and 11 earned runs.
Chayse Tracy and Garrett Irwin would pitch the final two innings in relief.
Savage claimed the win for the Pirates by going three and 2/3 innings giving up one hit, eight strikeouts, four walks and one earned run.
The three game series continued on Saturday afternoon in Plainview with the Bulldogs needing to win both games to keep their 2011 season alive.
Lubbock Cooper 021 90- 12 14 2
Borger 000 10-1 2 2