Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Baseball crushed by Crusaders

The Oran High School baseball team traveled to the outskirts of Jackson yesterday to take on the Saxony Lutheran Crusaders a team that the Eagles had defeated seven straight times.  That streak would end however as Oran got slapped around by the hosts to a tune of 10-1.

Oran jumped out on top.  Drew Reischman led off with a double to the base of the fence in left-center, moved to third on Todd Priggel's groundout. He scored on a wild pitch before Clay Sauceda lined out on a sharply hit ball to left.

Layne Johnson then doubled to deep center but was stranded.

After one-half inning, the Eagles had hit the ball hard three times, had two doubles to show for it and a run.  Unfortunately, after that, the bats fell dormant and they would only get two singles the rest of the way, an infield base hit by Johnson in the fourth and single by Lane Peterson, off the bench, in the seventh.

Johnson got the start on the mound.

He worked around a single, a walk and a double-steal in the first.  A walk and a single in the second.  He had a one, two, three third, thanks in large part to a fantastic diving catch in left-center by centerfielder Jacob Shoemaker.

In the fourth, Oran got Johnson's second hit of the day to start things off Cole Priggel was hit by a pitch, with one-out Kole Simms got plunked to load the bases.  The next two, however, went down looking.

The fourth would bring Johnson's day to an end on the mound.  

After a lead-off single, a groundout and two more singles and Johnson was replaced by Kaden Hargrove.

Hargrove walked the first batter he faced on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases with only one out.  He struck out the next.  But then back to back balks were called allowing two runs to score. Hargrove was replaced by Cole Priggel, who yielded a triple and hit a batter before getting an inning-ending force out.  Oran trailed 6-1.

Three straight singles to open the home-half of the fifth would chase Priggel.  Carter Heuring took over on the bump.  Following an error, a sacrifice fly and another single, the Eagles were down 8-1 after five.

In the sixth, Oran had a lead-off walk and a one-out hit batter but a double play would end the frame.

Saxony got two more in the sixth.  They used a one-out walk, double and a single to score before Heuring retired the next two.

On the day, the Eagles struck out seven times.

Johnson (3-2) took the loss.  He went 3 and one-third.  Allowed five hits, three runs, all earned.  He walked two and struck out three.  He and Reischman had the only extra-base hits, the doubles in the first.

Hargrove went one-third of an inning.  He was charged with one run (earned) on one hit.  He walked one and struck out one.  He was tagged with two balks.  Priggel also went one-third of an inning.  He was charged with three runs, two were earned, on three hits and he hit a batter.  Heuring went two frames and allowed three runs, two earned on three hits, in his varsity debut.

Coach Joe Bickings said, "The game just wasn’t a very good game for us.  We hit the ball well in the first inning but went ice cold after that.  I feel like we just gave at-bats away yesterday.  We watch too many fastballs go over the plate for strikes and were forced to swing at off speed pitches.  We can’t rely on our 1-4 hitters to score all the runs.  The bottom of the order has to produce for us to be successful. "

Oran fell to 6-5 with their second consecutive loss and will travel to Delta on Thursday for district and conference matchup that will start at 4:30pm

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