Slugging Rockford powers to sweep over Grand Haven

Matt DeYoung • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:30 AM

Unfortunately, the Buccaneers couldn't make the plays when needed, coming up short to the O-K Red-leading Rams, 8-2.

Grand Haven left the bases loaded four times — in the second, third, sixth and seventh innings — but managed just two runs.

On defense, the Buccaneers committed three errors.

"It's frustrating, but that's the kind of game baseball is," said Buccaneers' senior Mike Ginocchio, who got the starting nod for Grand Haven. Ginocchio pitched all seven innings, allowing 15 hits — all singles.

"We can't dwell on it," Ginocchio said. "We still did a great job fighting. You can't ever count us out."

To see a photo gallery from Thursday's game, click here.

The Bucs looked poised to get back into the game in the bottom of the seventh as their first three batters drew walks off Rockford reliever Max Crimp.

Adam Krizan drove in a run with a sacrifice grounder, then Cody Jonas struck out. Leadoff batter Matt Kroll walked on four consecutive pitches to load the bases again, but Doug Zelenka's chopper to third was gobbled up for the final out.

Grand Haven finished with just six hits. Danny Cotter and Jeff Stevens each singled twice while Kroll and Krizan added base hits.

"We had our chances," said first-year Buccaneers' coach Mike Hansen, whose team is now 10-4 overall and 3-3 in league games. "We gave them too many chances, and we didn't take advantage of ours.

"We got a double play ball in the first inning, it gets mishandled, and they score three runs. If we make that play, they don't score."

Rockford pushed three runs across in the first inning, then added single runs in the third and the fourth.

The Rams teed off on Ginocchio in the sixth, scoring three runs thanks to four base hits and a walk.

Even when Ginocchio got the Rams to hit the ball at people, the Bucs' defense let him down a few too many times.

"You can't give them more than 21 outs, and we did," Hansen said. "We gave them 25, 26 outs.

"I still feel good about how we've been playing. This is the only game this year that's gotten out of hand, and we still had chances."

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