Like night and day.
That’s how Boonville Pirates baseball coach Fred Smith described Tuesday night’s doubleheader on the road against the Mexico Bulldogs.
While pounding out 15 runs on nine hits in the first game for a 15-0 victory, Smith said the second game was frustrating as heck as Boonville had to rally with four runs in the eighth to win 9-8.
“Two important road wins,” Smith said. “Usually doubleheaders are made to be split. This was an important game not only in the conference but also for district seeding, so we’re glad to get it and now we’ll focus on Kirksville on Friday and Hannibal on Saturday.”
Happy was the word nonetheless in Game 1 as the Pirates, who improved to 14-1 overall and 6-1 in the NCMC, scored in every inning. Sixteen players also saw the field.
Smith said offensively everybody had hits in the first game against Mexico.
Nine to be exact with Connor Barnes, Dylan Watson and Ben Horst each collecting two hits each. Barnes finished 2-for-3 with a single, double and one RBI while Watson had two singles and three RBIs and Horst with two singles and two RBIs.
Kole Ficken also doubled and drove in two runs while Trae Williams added a single and two RBIs, Samuel Wiser with one single and one RBI, Avery Reardon two singles and Ethan Waibel and Clayton Gochenour each with one RBI.
Of course it didn’t hurt that Boonville plated two runs in the first or seven in the second to extend the lead to 9-0. However it got worse before it got better for Mexico as the Pirates tacked on three more in the third, two again in the fourth and one in the fifth to win by the mercy rule.
Reece Lang also picked up his third win of the season by striking out nine batters and giving up just one hit in four innings. Mason Hage then came in and pitched one inning in relief and gave up just one hit.
Whalen took the loss for Mexico by giving up nine runs on five hits and three walks in 1 2/3 innings.
In the second game, the Pirates picked up where they left off in Game 1 by pushing across one run in each of the first and fourth innings and two again in the sixth to make it 4-0. However in the top-half of the seventh, Mexico rallied back with five runs to grab a 5-4 lead only to have Boonville tie it with a run in the bottom half.
The Pirates also looked to be dead in the water after giving up three runs in the top-half of the eighth to trail 8-5. However, in the bottom half of the inning, Boonville rallied back in a big way with four hits-three of which went for doubles.
Smith said he saw the team come together in the eighth. “We could have folded our tents, but luckily in this game we were the home team so we had the last at bat,” Smith said.
Back to back doubles by Reardon and Cale Fox opened the eighth for the Pirates. Then, after a walk by Carson Campbell, senior Ethan Waibel put down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners over. Smith said the Mexico catcher then airmailed the ball over the third basemans head to bring in two runs and tie the game at 8-all. Two batters later after another double Barnes and intentional walk to Ficken, Watson hit a walk off single to left.
Watson also went 3-for-4 in the game with a single, two doubles and three RBIs. Waibel also had three hits, which included two singles and one double. Fox doubled and drove in one run. Barnes and Reardon also doubled in the game while Ficken singled and Samuel Wiser had one RBI.
Worley had two hits in the game for Mexico, both of which went for singles.
Kellen Barnes picked up the win in relief for Boonville, bringing his record to 2-0 on the season. In one inning, Barnes struck out two batters and gave up just one hit.
Jared Viertel got the no decision but pitched well enough to win by giving up just one hit and striking out seven batters in six innings. Trae Williams, meanwhile, pitched part of the seventh and gave up three runs on two walks. Hage then came in and pitched one inning and allowed five runs on four hits and one walk while striking out two batters.