Not only were the players exhausted but so was the scoreboard.
The scoreboard at Daniel Bohannon Field in Fort Walton Beach, that register’s only 10 innings, had to be cleared and started over as the four hour and 10 minute 12-inning game pushed it past its limits.
“It’s better than playing video games,” said Fort Walton Coach Brian McDaniel as he walked off the field at 10:10 p.m.
The Fort Walton Beach Vikings battled the Jeffersontown Chargers of Louisville, Kentucky, in baseball for 12 innings before athletic director Philip Dorn called the game ending in a 4-4 tie.
“We had some guys that dealt with a lot of adversities tonight,” McDaniel said. “It was an eventful night that’s for sure.”
The Chargers got on the board first with one run in the top of the second inning on an error and a wild pitch.
The Vikings answered in the bottom half with two. Tobias Ward-Bouldin, who finished with three hits, belted a single down the left field line and scored on a triple to right center by Adam Anderson. Alex Holtz hit a sacrifice to center to score Anderson for a 2-1 lead.
In the third, the Vikings picked up another run. Karsun Barrett singled to left and moved around on a bunt from Cam Gagliano. Griffin Wilbur followed with a double to left center to score Barrett for a 3-1 advantage.
In the bottom of the sixth, Ward-Bouldin led with a triple to right center and scored on a sacrifice from Anderson to give the Vikings a 4-1 lead.
In the top of the seventh all that was needed for a win were three outs. Instead the Chargers were charged up and connected for three hits and took advantage of three walks to tie the game.
Fort Walton had a chance in the bottom half, but couldn’t get past second base forcing the game into extra innings.
The Vikings loaded the bases in the eighth and ninth innings but couldn’t get that break to score. In the 10th, 11th and 12th innings, the Vikings made it to third but still couldn’t score.
“I know we didn’t put a W on the board, but we made mistakes on the bases that really cost us,” McDaniel said. “We had a couple of things happen in regular time that would have been a walk off scenario. But I think we got better going forward.
“And everything in those last five or six innings were big moments … but it was fun,” he said.
The Vikings used five pitchers in the contest, Holz, Anderson, Gagliano, Jordan Johnson and Waylon Steele.
Connecting for multiple hits were Ward-Bouldin with a triple and two singles, Justice Lucas with two singles, and Barrett with two singles.
Up next for the Vikings is a 6:30 p.m. game at home Thursday against West Florida High.