After breaking through early with a run in the top of the first Levi Snyder and the Tigers hit a wall, so to speak, Tuesday afternoon against Carl Junction.


After breaking through early with a run in the top of the first Levi Snyder and the Tigers hit a wall, so to speak, Tuesday afternoon against Carl Junction.

Snyder, attempting to bounce back from a rocky outing against Branson, issued successive walks to open the bottom of the first before hitting Garret Carden to load the bases.

A fielder’s choice and another walk helped the Bulldogs push across three runs to take a 3-1 lead in what was a deflating first inning for the Tigers.

Although Carthage rallied late in the game, it never fully recovered against Carl Junction, which successfully avenged its loss to Carthage last week at Carl Lewton Stadium with a 7-5 victory on a blustery afternoon at Carl Junction High School.

So far, the Tigers have shown the ability to score runs, which, at times, was an issue last season. Consistently finding the strike zone, however, has been the Tigers’ soft underbelly through the first five games this season.

Mike Godfrey, now in his second season at Carthage High School, made it clear afterward how important it is for his pitchers to locate and command the strike zone. 

“Pitching sets the tone (for the game) … there’s no doubt it,” said Godfrey, who challenged his team after the game to play with more confidence. “We’re kind of feeling our way through (games) instead of playing with confidence like we should. Today we did, anyway.”

The Tigers, who out-hit Carl Junction 11-5, got off to an encouraging start in the first. Brian Poston delivered a one-out double and moved to third after Caleb Fierro reached on an error. Terrin Garber helped the Tigers manufacture a run with a sacrifice fly to right center.

“We continued to do a good job offensively by coming out and jumping out on top,” said Godfrey. “But when you give (your opponent) free bases, free runners and free runs it’s a kick in the gut.”

Carl Junction scored twice in the third and once more in the fourth before the Tigers managed to pull within one run with a three-run sixth inning.

A pair of errors by Carl Junction allowed Ethan Wiggin and Mark Burgin to reach base with nobody out. Dalton Cossey, who made a sparkling defensive play from the outfield late in the game to save a run, delivered a one-out single to score Wiggin. Poston followed with his second hit, this time a single up the middle, scoring Burgin. Cossey scored the Tigers’ third and final run of the inning.