MOUNDRIDGE — Moundridge’s baseball team is starting to find its stride.
The Wildcats swept arch-rival Inman on Friday, winning the opener 16-6 and then taking the nightcap, 21-11. MHS is now 3-5 after getting off to a slow start.
The Wildcats used innings of seven and six runs to win the opener, but there was some other excitement to deal with as there had to be a change of venue shortly after the day started.
“The game started with (Inman’s) Connor Brown leading off with a home run and the lead changing hands a couple of times,” MHS coach Lynn Eichelberger said. “Then the chaos started as we slid into home in the bottom of the third inning and the plate broke off the post. After a 25 minutes delay of trying to fix home plate, we decided to move over to the friendly confines of Grasshopper Field. We used to play our games there before we built our new field. I can safely say it was the first time I chalked a field in front of a live studio audience. It was a perfect night to play there as it is a small field, but the wind had already switched to the north and was blowing in.”
The Wildcats pounded out 13 hits in the opener, three apiece by Bryant Olson and Chris Leddy. Olson drove in three and Payton Fast had two RBIs.
“Collin Kohl and Wyatt Falso pitched well again,” Eichelberger said. “We limited their walks and made them put the ball in play. Once again our first four hitters Noah Eichelberger, Collin Kohl, Chris Leddy and Bryant Olson got the job done, going 9 for 12 with two doubles and a triple. Moving over to Grasshopper really fired our team up I think. They love to practice over there and especially love to hit at the smaller diamond.”
Inman had four hits in the game with Brown’s homer the big blow.
“We struggled to make plays,” Inman coach Matt Mikulecky said. “Not being efficient with our pitches and failure to make routine plays really hurt us. We have work to do in all facets, but we need to make plays. Our pitching depth is razor thin with two of our top pitchers unavailable as they battle through injury issues, so it is going to be critical for us to make pitches and field the baseball going forward.”
Moundridge erupted for 18 hits in Game 2 and had five innings of three or more runs, which offset eight in the fourth by the Teutons.
“Chris Leddy started on the hill and gave us three good innings before he tired and reached his pitch count limit,” Eichelberger said. “Josh Knight bridged the gap until we brought in freshman Wyatt Falco again like Game 1. He pitched well and got the win as we had to come back after a bad fourth inning. The wheels fell off the bus during the fourth inning, but we fought through it and came to bat in the bottom of the inning being aggressive. Plating 13 runs in the last innings was a testament to our team for not letting one bad inning ruin their whole night. Many players had multi-hit nights and we strung together a lot of good at bats putting the ball in play with two strikes and two outs.”
Kohl drove in five to lead the ‘Cats and Fast added four RBIs. Eichelberger was 3 for 4 with three runs scored and three RBIs. Corbin Unruh drove in three.
Inman had eight hits, with Landen Snyder coming up with three RBIs.
“Eleven walked batters and eleven errors. That stat line says it all,” Mikulecky said. We just need to make some adjustments on the mound and go get the baseball when it's put in play. We need to make outs, it's really just that simple. I am very proud of relievers, Connor Sivils and Landen Snyder, coming in and giving our defense a chance. They came in and did their jobs.”