WEDNESDAY NIGHT SPRING SPORTS - Lexington defeats White Knoll 8-4 to even series
A toast to the past was given Wednesday night on the diamond by Lexington High School.
Members of the 1999 Class 4A state championship team were honored prior to the start of the Wildcats' Game 2 matchup against White Knoll. The returning players were met with applause and hugged the current Lexington players are part of the pre-game festivties.
Once the action began, Lexington rallied from an early deficit to defeat the Timberwolves 8-4 to even the 3-game series.
"We had 9 strikeouts on Monday night (a 3-1 loss to White Knoll), so we really worked hard on 2-strike hitting at practice yesterday and we spent an hour doing it," Lexington head coach Brian Hucks. "So I thought it really paid off. We had some key, 2-strike hits that extended innings and we're able to scoring some runs. So, I'm really proud of how they bounced back. That was a tough loss Monday night. A sign of a resilient team and we've got a young group."
White Knoll took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first of two RBI hits by Jacob Bannister. The Wildcats answered with 3 runs in the bottom of the 2nd, only to have Bannister's second RBI cut the lead to 3-2 and the Timberwolves load the bases with no outs.
Lefthander Will Wicker replaced starter Elijah Ogden on the mound. After sending his first pitch high off the back fence, Wicker proceeded to strike out the side and fanned 6 of the first 7 batters faced in 2 2/3 innings of work.
"It got a little right hairy there," Hucks said. "They got the bases loaded with nobody out and we made a pitching change and Will Wicker came in and did a tremendous job getting out of that jam.
"That was a huge momentum swing right now."
"Their guy Wicker came in and threw great there in big situations and we weren't able to produce," White Knoll head coach Blake Roland said. "So, tip your cap to him. He did a great job."
After a leadoff double by Blake Knight in the Bottom 4th, Landon McMahan belted an RBI triple to make it 4-2. Tristan Allen followed with a 2-run single to force a pitching change for White Knoll.
A throwing error scored Bannister in the 5th to make it 6-3, but the Wildcats added insurance in the Bottom 6th on an RBI single by Ryan Toll and sacrifice fly by Knight.
Jonny Power relieved Wicker with 2 outs in the 6th. He gave up an RBI fielder's choice by Grayson Endrenyl in the 7th, but managed to get a flyout with runners on 2nd and 3rd to end the game.
The rubber match of the series is set for Friday at White Knoll.
"Good start from Alex Lyon, a sophomore," said Roland when asked what it will take to win series. "He's struggled a little bit this year, but he'll be ready. Just mix it up. We were talking to our coaching staff. We walked 8 guys, hit 1 and they scored 8 runs. They walked 4 guys, hit 1 and we scored 4 runs. So, it's very, very relative. Free bases and runs are very relative. So Alex needs to throw strikes, but we need to make good plays in the field. If we can mimimize some damage, we've got a chance."
Dutch Fork 5, Chapin 1
Ty Olenchuk had 2 hits, allowed just 3 hits and struck out 8 in 7 innings for the Silver Foxes Thursday night.
Crosby Jones and Noah Jackson each had 2 RBI for Dutch Fork, which evened its 3-game series with the Eagles.
The rubber match of the series is set for Friday.
Midland Valley 5, Gray Collegiate 4
River Bluff 6, Midland Valley 1
Kayla Oswell went 2-4 with 2 RBI, Emily Gonzalez was 2-3 with 2 RBI and Kourtney Culcleasure was 2-4 for the now 4-0 Lady Gators.
Pelion 4, Strom Thurmond 3
Mady Quinn's game-tying goal in the final seconds of regulation forced overtime and Nat Campbell's goal in the 2nd period gave the Lady Panthers a win to open Region 5-3A play.
Blythewood 1, Lexington 0