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story.lead_photo.caption Zach Wolken of Helias starts his swing during at-bat in Friday's game against Borgia at the American Legion Post 5 Sports Complex. Photo by Liv Paggiarino / News Tribune.

The Helias Crusaders felt they gave it away.

"That was all on us," Helias coach Chris Wyrick said after the Crusaders fell 6-5 to the Borgia Knights to open the baseball season at the American Legion Post 5 Sports Complex. "We created all the chaos, we made the mistakes.

"The misfortune was all created by us. It wasn't a very good effort. It was not your ideal opening game."

The Crusaders really didn't have an area they couldn't point to as a positive.

"We just didn't do anything well in any phase of the game," Wyrick said.

After Borgia scored a run in the top of the first inning, Helias came back with two in the bottom of the frame.

Alex Loethen hit a one-out double before advancing to third on a groundout. Jake Weaver then walked and stole second before Sam Schell drilled a 1-2 pitch for a double to give the Crusaders a 2-1 lead.

The Crusaders had the momentum. But not for long.

"We gave it right back," Wyrick said. "We gave up a leadoff walk and that's a momentum killer."

The Knights turned that leadoff walk into the first of two runs in the top of the second to take a 3-2 lead. Both runners scored with two outs.

Mistakes in the each of the first two innings — a fly ball that dropped because it wasn't seen off the bat, the other when an an outfielder failed to get back quickly enough to catch a ball — led directly to Borgia runs.

"Things like that can't happen if you expect to win a ballgame against a quality opponent," Wyrick said.

Both teams scored runs in the third. For Helias, Weaver hit a two-out double and scored on a single by Schell.

Borgia made it 6-3 with single runs in the third and fourth innings.

Helias battled to get back into the game late, stranding runners at second and third in the fifth and sixth innings.

In the seventh, Zach Wolken led off with a walk and advanced to third on a single by Weaver. Weaver then stole second and when the throw went into center, Wolken scored to make it 6-4.

After a fielders choice erased Weaver, Borgia got the second out of the inning on a strikeout. Ethan Holzhauser and Scheulen hit consecutive singles to bring home a run to make it 6-5. Scheulen moved to second on the throw home.

But Borgia got the final out of the game when Helias made a mistake running the bases and had a runner thrown out easily at the plate.

"If we can just play catch, make the routine play, this game doesn't end 6-5," Wyrick said.

Nate Roark, the first of four Helias pitchers, took the loss. He allowed three runs — one earned — in three hits and three walks in 12/3 innings, He struck out one.

Cole Peters worked the next 21/3 innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on two hits and three walks with one strikeout. Scheulen worked two innings, giving up a run on two hits. He struck out three and walked two.

Loethen pitched the seventh for the Crusaders, giving up two hits and striking out one.

"We have to have guys throw more than two innings at a time," Wyrick said. "We can't use 4-5 guys a game, we just can't do it.

"We have to gave guys who are going go out there and stand up and give us four or five good innings."

Helias finished with nine hits. Weaver led with three. Schell, Holzhauser and Scheulen all had two hits.

Helias (0-1) is back in action Monday at Fatima.

"We have to get better, it's my job to get us better.," Wyrick said. "Hopefully next time out we will be better than today because that bar is not very high."

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