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April 10, 2012Montgomery County High School
R-2 BASEBALL TEAM WINS 1, LOSES 2
IN SEASON’S SECOND WEEK
The Montgomery County R-2 Wildcats Baseball team played 3 games the week of March 26-30, losing the first two games and winning the third game. On March 27 they traveled to Centralia and lost 8-6. On March 29 they hosted North Callaway and lost 5-2. On March 30 they hosted Orchard Farm in their first East Missouri (EMO) Conference game of the season and came from behind in the final inning to win 6-5.
As in their first 4 games of the season, the Wildcats scored in the first inning to take the early lead. R-2 took a 2-0 lead in this game when Taylor Deves and Luther Harris each singled, then executed a double steal, and scored on a single to right by Nick Oden.
The Wildcats added 2 more runs in the third inning, when Dakota Smith singled and scored on a single by Harris. Harris then scored on a single to left field by Ryan Knipfel to give R-2 a 4-0 lead. Centralia scored a run in the fourth inning on a home run, to make the score 4-1.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, the Wildcats were “victimized” for the second time this season by a “questionable” ruling by the umpires. Centralia scored 1 run in the inning to make the score to 4-2, before apparently making the third out to end the fifth inning. However, the umpire in charge ruled that the last batter was safe and another run had scored to make the score 4-3. R-2 starting pitcher, Harris, seem rattled by the turn of events and gave up a 3-run homer to the next batter to give Centralia a 6-4 lead.
The Wildcats responded with two runs in the top of the sixth inning to tie the game 6-6. Chase Worsham led off the inning with a double to left-center and scored on a single by Colt Ellis. Ellis eventually made it to third base and stole home, as another Wildcat runner was picked off base and was caught in a run down.
Oden relieved Harris and Centralia reached him for two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to regain the lead at 8-6. The Wildcats tried to mount another comeback, but they left 2 runners on base in the top of the seventh inning and lost 8-6.
The top offensive players for R-2 were as follows: Harris 2 hits, 2 runs scored and 1 run batted in (RBI); Worsham 2 hits and 1 run scored; Smith 2 hits and 1 run scored; Ellis 1 hit, 1 run scored and 1 RBI; Deves 1 hit, 1 run scored and 1 RBI; Oden 1 hit and 2 RBI’s; and Knipfel 1 hit and 1 RBI. David Reagan also added a single. Despite all of these hits, the Wildcats were again unable to get runners home, leaving 8 runners on base in the game. Oden took the loss as the relief pitcher, as Centralia gained and kept the lead while Nick was pitching.
In the North Callaway game the Wildcats scored first for the sixth straight game, although they didn’t score until the bottom of the second inning this time. R-2 scored when Harris singled, stole second base, and scored on an NC error to lead 1-0. The score remained 1-0 until the top of the fifth inning when NC got a man on base due to an R-2 error, who eventually reached third base and scored on a squeeze bunt to tie the game 1-1.
NC took a 2-1 lead in the sixth inning, which was made possible by 2 Wildcat errors. However, the Wildcats responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the sixth and tied the game at 2-2, as Deves was hit by a pitch, stole second and third, and scored on a single by Knipfel.
Starting R-2 pitcher, Jackson Bishop, retired the first two NC batters in the top of the seventh inning, but then walked the next two batters. The next NC batter hit the first pitch over the left field fence for 3-run homer to make the score 5-2. The Wildcats did not score in the bottom of the seventh and lost the game 5-2.
The top offensive players for R-2 were as follows: Harris 2 hits and 1 run scored; Knipfel 1 hit and 1 RBI. Evan Milner and Ellis each had 1 hit and Deves scored 1 run. Once again the Wildcats hurt themselves, as they left 7 runners on base in the last 4 innings of the game. Despite Bishop’s excellent pitching (0 earned runs allowed through 6 2/3 innings and 8 strikeouts), he took the loss by giving up the winning runs in the seventh inning.
Having lost two tough games, the Wildcats hosted Orchard Farm the next day, hoping to rebound and pick up a win in their first EMO Conference game of the season. Despite falling behind early in the game for the first time all season, the Wildcats were able to rebound and pick up a very important win.
After two scoreless innings things did not look good for the Wildcats, as Orchard Farm was able to score 5 runs on 4 hits off of R-2’s starting pitcher Colt Ellis. Fortunately, Cameron Parrish took over as R-2’s relief pitcher in the fourth inning and shut down OF for the rest of the game.
R-2’s bats finally came to life in the fourth inning. Smith led off with a single, stole second, and scored on a single to by Deves. Harris then singled and both he and Deves scored on a 2-out error by Orchard Farm to make the score 5-3.
The score remained that way until the bottom of the seventh inning (final inning for high school games), when R-2 was able to score 3 runs and earn an exciting win. Oden and Bishop led off the inning with singles. Oden scored on a double by Ellis to make the score 5-4. OF then walked Smith to load the bases to set up a possible double play. However, the first pitch to Deves sailed wide of home plate and the catcher, and Bishop scored to tie the game at 5-5.
OF then walked Deves to load the bases for another possible double play. The strategy worked for one out, when Ellis was thrown out at home plate on a ground ball by Harris. However, Milner delivered the game-winning single to left center field, scoring Smith and giving the Wildcats a much-needed, come-from-behind 6-5 victory.
The leading offensive players for R-2 were as follows: Luther Harris 2 hits and 1 run scored; Smith 1 hit and 2 runs scored; Deves 1 hit, 1 run scored and 1 RBI; Ellis 1 hit and 1 RBI; Milner 1 hit and 1 RBI; Oden 1 hit and 1 run scored; and Bishop 1 hit and 1 run scored.
This exciting victory improved the Wildcats’ overall record for 2012 to 3 wins and 4 losses. They have an EMO Conference record of 1-0.