PBR Spotlight Game: #17 Celina vs #4 Defiance

By Dylan Hefflinger
Ohio Editor in Chief/NW Scout

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PBR Spotlight Game: #17 Celina vs #4 Defiance

Seth Lonsway vs Defiance 2Defiance – When heading to a game in Defiance you are expecting to see an outstanding pitching match-up and that most certainly was the case when young, talented sophomore southpaw Seth Lonsway (pictured right) out-dueled 2016 Louisville commit Shay Smiddy.

With winds excess of 30 mph, the #17 ranked Celina Bulldogs defeated their Western Buckeye League foe #4 Defiance by a final score of 1-0.

Lonsway proved why he is one of the top prospects in the 2017 class as the lefty started the game off strong, allowing just two batters to reach through the first four innings, both via the walk. The first hit Lonsway allowed came in the 5th with two outs, a double off of senior catcher Gage Cordray's bat.

As the game went on, Lonsway got stronger and stronger finishing off Defiance in the 7th 1-2-3 while sitting down 6 of the last 7 batters he faced.

Defiance's Smiddy (pictured right) matched Lonsway (pictured left) pitch for pitch but was unable to overcome miscues in the 3rd.
Seth Lonsway vs DefianceShay Smiddy changeup vs Celina

In the top of the 3rd, Defiance's 2015 bugaboo reared its head again as the Bulldogs infield recorded three errors.

Sophomore Isiah Eichler reached on a throwing error to start the frame before advancing to third thanks to another Defiance error on a Justin Keeling sacrifice bunt to put runners on the corners. After Keeling was picked off first and the infield now moving in, senior Jimmy Luebke followed with a slow roller to third.

With thoughts of getting the runner at the plate the ball was bobbled allowing Eichler to score what proved to be the only run of the game.

After the debacle in the 3rd, Smiddy came out stronger than ever in the game, retiring 14 of the final 17 batters he faced while striking out six as the righty tried to keep Defiance in the game.

Despite the dominance of Lonsway on the mound, Defiance was not void of chances to score as the Bulldogs put runners in scoring position five straight innings.

Defiance's best chance came in the 6th. 

Smiddy walked, advancing to second on a Tyler Weaver (Cuyahoga Community College commit) sacrifice bunt. Celina's sophomore third baseman Tanner Freeman then made two plays to get Celina out of the jam. Cordray hit a shot of the ground that Freeman made a solid play on. After a walk to unsigned senior Jimmy Bauer, junior Connor Stykemain hit a slow roller that Freeman charged and made a strong throw to retire the side.

With the win Celina moves to 12-4 overall and 4-0 on the season in the WBL while Defiance loses its 3rd game in its last four contests and falls to 9-3 overall and 2-2 in the WBL.

Top Performances on the day

Celina celebrates win over Defiance+ Seth Lonsway: The sophomore southpaw went the distance allowing just two hits and five walks while striking out five. At the play the left-handed hitter had a single.

+ Shay Smiddy: The 2016 Louisville commit went the distance allowing just two hits and six walks while striking out eight.

+ Tanner Freeman: The sophomore third baseman made numerous big plays in the field while recording three outs.

+ Braden Frederick: The sophomore moved into the leadoff spot and had a single as well as a sacrifice bunt.

+ Gage Corday: The unsigned senior catcher continued his hot streak at the plate, lacing a double off of Lonsway.


Celina     001 000 0 - 1 2 0

Defiance  000 000 0 - 0 2 3

Records: Celina 12-4 (4-0 WBL), Defiance 9-3 (2-2 WBL).

Winning pitcher: Seth Lonsway (7 innings, 0 runs, 2 hits, 5 strikeouts, 5 walks).

Losing pitcher: Shay Smiddy (7 innings, 1 run, 2 hits, 8 strikeouts, 6 walks).

Leading hitters: (Celina, 2 hits) - Seth Lonsway single; Jimmy Leubke single, walk. (Defiance, 2 hits) - Braden Frederick single; Gage Cordray double, walk.

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