Aurora baseball falls in walk off fashion to Summit Christian Academy

Skylan Akins

Aurora senior Trey Mulholland delivers a strike in the fourth inning against Summit Christian Academy. Mulholland pitched 5.2 innings striking out nine batters, walking one and only allowing two earned runs. He will continue his baseball career at one of the best JUCO’s in the nation, Crowder College. (Photo by Skylan Akins)

The Aurora Houn’ Dawgs are riding the success of a season that brought them their first district championship since 2019. The run came to a halt in the sectional round against fifth-ranked Summit Christian Academy behind an RBI single in the bottom of seventh inning that gave the Eagles a 4-3 lead Wednesday afternoon in Lee’s Summit.
Trey Mulholland toed the rubber for the Dawgs, and the future Crowder Roughrider was an escape artist, managing to strand four Eagle runners in scoring position in the first, second, and fourth innings—including a bases loaded, no out jam in the second. However, Summit Christian’s pitcher came out on fire, striking out the first six batters he saw.
Aurora struck in the third as senior Ryan Clark hit a two-run double to lead off the game. Fellow seniors Jaesik Friggle and Aaron Fisher both found ways on base as Friggle reached on an error and Fisher knocked them both in with a two-out, two-RBI double to deep left field. Mulholland added to his own cause driving in Fisher with a hard hit single to right field. The Dawgs held a 3-0 lead until the fifth inning when four singles equated to three runs and the game was tied. The Aurora offense disappeared after the third inning, as only two of the final 14 batters reached base.
Friggle took over pitching duties with two down in the sixth as Mulholland reached his pitch limit. Friggle got two, hard hit flyouts to start the bottom of the seventh inning, but a hit batter, walk, and an RBI single would win the game for the Eagles.
“Our kids competed the entire game,” said Aurora coach James Hoffman. “In the inning (Summit) scored three, we had some mental lapses, but that’s high school baseball. We took advantage of some as well in the third. Trey competed his tail off on the mound. To get out of the bases loaded, no out jam was huge, not just to not allow a run but also for the mentality of the team. That is just the type of season they have had and the kind of competitors they are and it is that kind of grit and fight that will make them successful in life.”
So long seniors
The Dawgs graduate five starters from a class that went 59-20 in their three years of competition. Jaesik Friggle, Aaron Fisher, Ryan Clark, Brendon Hall and Trey Mulholland all significantly contributed this season.
“The three that has been with us the whole time (Friggle, Fisher, Mulholland) we knew they were going to be good,” Hoffman said. “They turned into great leaders, really, really good baseball players and just better people. Brendon Hall and Ryan Clark didn’t play their freshman year, then COVID and they didn’t play until this year and we really needed them! If you saw Ryan’s plate appearances from the start of the season to the end of the year, it’s a night and day difference. They all had their role and we will miss all of them next season.”
A program like Aurora baseball that has seen two state championships and a third-place finish in the last six years doesn’t rebuild. They reload. Hayze and Heath Hoffman, Trandan Darnall and Kelton Brown will all be back next season with a JV squad that has been battle tested and the mission will be simple: get back to the finals.


Lawrence County Record

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