Coyotes baseball picks up split with White Cloud

Reed City lacks consistency in conference doubleheader

REED CITY — When the Coyotes are rolling, they’re tough to beat, but when they’re off, Reed City baseball coach Marty Shaffer said their struggles are of monstrous proportions.

“It’s Jekyll and Hyde with us. We came out and hit the ball and played defense in the first game,” Shaffer said. “We play well and then we just can’t pull it together. That first game was really good to get a win, but we took two steps forward and then four steps back in the second game.”

The first game Shaffer mentioned was a dominant 8-1 win over the visiting White Cloud Indians in Central State Activities Association (CSAA) play on Tuesday. The second game wasn’t as nice, with the Coyotes falling 9-3 with a pile of errors in the field.

In the opener, Ray Phenix pitched a gem, going all seven innings with 12 strikeouts and just one hit allowed. Eric Grannis led the offensive attack with a deep home run on the first pitch of the third inning to make the lead 5-1. Logan Straub followed with a two-run bomb in the fourth to make it 8-1, a lead the Coyotes would hold for the rest of the game.

Straub took the hill for the Coyotes in game two and struggled, tossing five strikeouts and giving up five runs in his four innings of work. Josh Saez came in to finish the game, allowing three runs with two strikeouts. Grannis had his second homer of the day in the sixth to make it 9-3, but that’s all the offense the Coyotes could muster.

The Coyotes (6-18, 4-10 CSAA) return to action on Friday at home against Chippewa Hills.