The luck of the Irish finally dried up, if only temporarily, in the Elkhorn Valley Juniors League Championship.
The O'Neill Pinnacle Bank Irish Juniors dropped the championship game against Creighton 8-3 Tuesday night. Creighton jumped out to an early lead, scoring two runs in the first. They added one more run in the third inning before O'Neill was finally able to get on the board, when Justin Appleby's double brought in Wyatt Liewer for a run. Appleby then scored thanks to a Shayne Campbell sacrifice ground out.
Creighton scored three more runs in the top of the fifth and one in both the sixth and seventh innings to secure the league title. The normally high scoring O'Neill Juniors only had four hits on the night, two each by Appleby and Fracisco Perez. They stranded eleven runners in the game, including during three different bases loaded opportunities.
Cole Gaughenbaugh took the mound for the start and the Irish used four more pitchers on the night in their attempt to keep in reach of Creighton.
"That is baseball, Creighton out-hit us, out-pitched us, played better defensively, and were more fundamentally solid tonight. They took momentum from the first pitch and we were never able to get it back on our side with a big hit or big inning," said Greg Appleby. "We made some uncharacteristic mistakes tonight, and will learn from them and be better as we head into the weekend. We need two good practices the next two days and need our guys to be fresh for the Area Tournament. While rightfully disappointed in our performance tonight, we still look forward to correcting our mistakes and getting better for post-season play."
The Irish are back in action for the Class B Area 5 tournament July 8-12 in Wayne.