The Start baseball team trailed Bowsher by two runs early in Tuesday night’s City League championship game at Bowman Park.
The Spartans, who had lost in the previous two City League title games, didn’t blink.
Start tied the score midway through the contest before rallying for three runs in the top of the seventh to secure a 5-2 victory to give the Spartans their first City League crown since 1998.
Start’s Scyler Glass tagged a game-deciding two-run single in the top of the seventh to break a 2-2 score and Nik Syroka added a run-scoring base hit to account for the final run of the game.
"It means a lot to the seniors after being in the City League championship three straight years," Start coach Jason Biniker said. "It’s great for them to end up with a banner with 2013 on it."
Start right-hander Travis Kominek earned the decision after allowing two runs in the first inning before settling down and pitching six straight scoreless frames. He struck out 10 while limiting Bowsher to three hits.
"I made my adjustment when I needed to," Kominek said. "I saw they were hitting the curveball and started throwing the fastball."
PHOTO GALLERY: City League Championship Start vs. Bowsher
Bowsher, which defeated Start twice during the regular season, took an early 2-0 lead after touching up Kominek for three hits in the opening frame.
Angelo Foust led off the inning with a triple down the left field line. Braiden Greisiger followed with a grounder to the left side of the infield in which Alex Duncan had trouble getting out of his glove and throwing to first base. A bobble at first base allowed Greisiger to reach first base on an error and allowed Foust to score easily to give the Rebels a 1-0 lead.
Jacob Empey made it 2-0 when he doubled to center to allow the Rebels baserunner to score easily from second.
Mitch Vanderhorst followed with a single to put two on base with no outs.
A major rally seemed in the works for the Rebels (20-7, 10-1).
However, Kominek, a senior, proceeded to strike out the next two batters before getting the last batter of the inning to ground out.
"The fact we were able to hold them to two runs in the inning was a huge momentum change," Biniker said. "It could have easily been four or five runs."
Meanwhile, Bowsher left-hander Joel McGorty pitched three shutout innings before the Spartans (15-12, 9-2) rallied for two runs in the fourth to tie the score at 2-2.
Duncan tagged a run-scoring hit for the Spartans’ first run of the inning to make it 2-1.
They tied the score when Nate Kinor reached base on a Rebels infield error that allowed Duncan to score.
Just like that, the game was locked in a tie and apparently heading to a fantastic finish for the Spartans.
Contact Donald Emmons at: firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-724-6302, or on Twitter @DemmonsBlade.