The Eminence Warriors baseball team traveled to Iroquois High School to play the Raiders in what turned out to be an offensive breakout for both teams. Unfortunately a late-inning rash of errors and walks opened the door for the Raiders to pull away for the 16-8 win.
The Warriors opened the game by scoring four runs in the first inning and eventually built a 6-0 lead. Heading into the fifth inning. Junior pitcher Cole Lawson was cruising on the mound, allowing only two hits an d striking out seven before some untimely defensive mistakes led to trouble. Before the inning was over the Warriors found themselves down 9-6.
The Raiders added seven more in the sixth to make it 16-6 before the Warriors got two in the seventh to set the final margin at eight runs.
Travis Bell had a good day at the plate for the Warriors with three hits, a stolen base and three RBIs. Mitchell Golden and Lawson also had multi-hit games. Austin Jones had three stolen bases and scored two runs for the Warriors. Golden and Mitchell Metten also scored twice.
Lawson ended with the seven strikeouts and walked four batters. The Warriors walked 10 batters and committed five errors.
“They had several bunts for infield hits in the fifth inning and it got us rattled,” Coach Jay Virgin said. “We need to defend the bunt better. Those consecutive bunts got them going and the wheels kind of fell off for us. Cole deserved better than that considering how well he pitched not only in this game but also over the last two games.”
Walton 10 EHS 0
Walton jumped on the Warriors for six runs in the first inning and cruised to the 10-run win in five innings.
“All six runs came with two outs,” Virgin said. “We missed a foul pop up that would have been the final out and then seven straight hits and a walk later we are down 6-0. Austin Jones pitched well after that but we couldn’t get any offense going. Austin had two hits and Jalen had one and that was it. We had several hard-hit balls right at people and one that hit a runner and cost us an out.”
Virgin remained upbeat about the team’s progress.
“We are getting there,” he said. “We have a way to go but we’re showing improvement every game. The pitching is getting better but we have to eliminate the errors and play better defense. We have to be more aggressive at the plate.”
Owen Co. 14 EHS 4
Despite falling behind 11-0 after three innings Virgin was impressed with his team’s improvement against Owen County on Thursday in Owenton. The Warriors rallied for four runs in the final two innings and cut down on the strikeouts against the Rebels.
“I know this may sound weird but I was actually pleased with the way we played, offensively,” Virgin said. “We only had three strikeouts in the game. We swung the bats well early in the game but didn’t generate much offense until later in the game. Our pitchers were suffering a little bit from sore arms and that got us in trouble as we got deeper into the rotation, but I was pleased with the way we hung in and kept competing.”
The Warriors cut the lead to 11-4 in the fifth inning after scoring a single run in the fourth. Hayden Hoofman singled to lead off the fifth and Jones followed with a double. Dixie drove on the runs with a double of his own and eventually scored on a RBI by Golden.
The Rebels came back for three more runs to end the game in the bottom of the fifth.
“I was pleased because I saw improvement in the areas that have been really hurting us which were aggressiveness at the plate and defense,” Virgin said.