The Boonville Pirates baseball team inched closer to its first ever Tri-County Conference title Thursday night on the road against the Eldon Mustangs.
After dominating the North Central Missouri Conference for the last 10 years, the Pirates raised its season record to 6-7 and conference mark to 3-0 by beating Eldon 10-0 in six innings.
Of course the big story of the game was the 16 strikeouts by senior Reece Lang. While improving to 2-2 on the season, Lang may have had his best performance of the season by giving up just one hit and one walk in six innings.
Boonville Pirates baseball coach Adam Arnette said Lang came out and dominated all game. “He was really efficient with his pitches and was able to locate the ball all game,” Arnette said. “He was also able to change speeds often and keep Eldon hitters off balance. Just a great performance overall by him.”
The Pirates also recorded their highest run total of the season with 10 runs.
With runs in every inning but the fifth, Boonville also wasted little time getting on the board against Eldon with three runs in the first on a RBI-single to right by Saylor Marquez and a two-RBI double to left by Josh Polk.
The Pirates also added two in the second to extend the lead to 5-0 on a two-RBI double to left by Connor Barnes.
The runs continued for Boonville after that with one in the third when Peyton Keeran led off the inning with an infield single to third and later stole home. Then, in the fourth, the Pirates tacked on two more runs on another steal home-this time by Carson Campbell-and an infield single to third by Marquez to score Barnes to make it 8-0.
Boonville plate two more runs in the sixth on a lead off single to left by Campbell and a two run home run to left by Barnes.
Arnette said the Pirates are starting to get going in the right direction at the plate. “We still have some work to do, but we did see some strides in the right direction for some of the guys,” Arnette said. “Connor really stepped up at the plate and helped to lead the team. He looked relaxed at the plate and really made things happen for us.”
Barnes finished the game with three hits to lead the Pirates, with a single, double, home run and four RBIs. Marquez had two hits and two runs batted in while Polk added a double and two RBIs. Keeran and Campbell each had one hit.
Snelling had the only hit in the game for Eldon, being a single. Brandt took the loss for the Mustangs by giving up seven runs on five hits and five walks in three innings.
Boonville also won the JV game against Eldon 17-7.
The Pirates JV, 3-3 overall and 1-2 in the TCC, scored in every inning against Eldon and led 5-0 after one, 10-7 after two and 11-7 after three before adding six more runs in the fourth.
“We threw a new arm in the second inning and didn’t fill up the strike zone or play well behind and we gave up some runs,” said Boonville JV coach Greg Hough. “Overall, I thought we hit pretty decent and was able to save some arms for JV tournament Saturday at Hallsville.”
Axton Nease picked up the win for Boonville’s JV by striking out two batters and giving up one hit in one inning. Landon Williams pitched one inning in relief and allowed seven runs on three hits and three walks. Then, to finish the game, Nathan Platt pitched two innings and surrendered one hit and one walk while striking out two batters.
Boonville’s JV also out-hit Eldon 12-5, with Kayle Rice, Cody Garner and Dawson Barnthouse each collecting three hits.
Rice went 3-for-3 with three doubles while Barnthouse had a single, two doubles and five RBIs and Garner with two singles, one double and three RBIs. Hunter Pethan had one triple while Harper Stock added a single and two RBIs, Russell Potter with one single and one RBI and Spencer Steakley with one RBI.
For Eldon, Hardy had two hits.