Bruins lose late lead against Jefferson City

Jefferson City’s John Wilson helped start the Jays’ sixth-inning rally.
Thursday, April 28, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 4:08 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 13, 2008

Bob Coons, the Jefferson City baseball coach, said John Wilson, his sophomore shortstop, always does the little things needed to win.

But against Rock Bridge on Wednesday, Wilson came through with several big plays.

Wilson had his team’s first three hits including the tying RBI in the sixth inning to help the Jays pull out a 3-1 victory at Rock Bridge Field.

“John Wilson obviously was a big key,” Coons said. “He came up with hit after hit all day and just had a great day offensively for us.”

The Jays went into the sixth trailing 1-0, but after a Bruins error put junior Bryce Kay on second, Wilson came to the plate.

With the count at 1-2, Wilson fouled off three straight pitches. On the seventh, he lined a single to right field to score Kay.

“To his credit, he fouled off a bunch of pitches and he really battled,” Coons said. “That was a great at bat the way he hit the ball down the line. That was the at bat of the game. It was huge.”

After a double by freshman Jordan Coons, sophomore Cory Stuefer’s single scored Wilson and put the Jays ahead for good.

Jefferson City (9-10) batted around in the sixth, scoring all of its runs on four hits, an error and a walk.

“I think we started getting up a little bit and get a little intensity,” Wilson said. “Jordan got a big hit, a big double and we strung some hits together.”

Wilson went 3-4 with a double and two singles.

“I was just trying to stay back,” Wilson said. “I’ve been getting up in front lately. I was trying to stay back with my back foot and hit it hard.”

Coons said Wilson is a well-rounded player and is batting around .300.

“John’s a good hitter,” Coons said. “The good thing about John is that he’s a contact hitter and a situational hitter. (His forte) is moving runners and that’s why we put him in the two-hole.”

Team play also comes first on Wilson’s priority list.

“He’ll sacrifice himself (for the team),” Coons said. “He probably leads our team in sacrifice bunts and at bats where he moves runners and gets out. A lot of time, he’s giving himself up for the benefit of the team and it says a lot about what kind of hitter he is and the kind of player he is.”

The Bruins (7-6) left 11 men on base and stranded tworunners in both the sixth and seventh innings.

“We just didn’t get a hit when we needed to get a hit and that’s the way we’ve been playing,” Rock Bridge coach Terry Whitney said. “We had our chances too. We put some guys on base.”

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