Plymouth bats beat Wawasee 10-9
PLYMOUTH — The Plymouth bats finally came back to life Friday night against the visiting Wawasee Warriors. And boy was it needed.
The Pilgrims punched out 15 hits in the contest, including eight doubles, and defeated the Northern Lakes Conference foe Warriors 10-9.
Wawasee was able to get on the board first with three first inning runs.
Back-to-back singles by Si Shear and Gage Reinhard started the game for the Warriors. Three-hole hitter Derrick Sorensen tried to move the runners up a base, but his bunt went back to Plymouth started Chase Peters, who was able to get the lead runner out at third base. Donovan Navarro grounded to second baseman Trenton Briles for what looked to be an inning-ending double play, but he bobbled the ball and the error loaded the bases. Peters had some control issues over the span of the next three batters. He hit Nate Hare to force in the first run and then walked the next two hitters to bring two more runs across.
The inning could have been much worse. With bases loaded, Issac Rigdon hit a line drive to Connor Flynn at shortstop, and he was able to throw over to Joe Knapp at third base just in time to force out the runner and end the inning.
Plymouth answered back in the bottom of the inning.
Knapp doubled to deep left field and Flynn followed it up with a double off the fence in right to score Knapp. Jacob Seagraves moved Flynn up the third base with a single to right, and Ike Kastner scored him with a double to the left center gap. Both runners scored two batters later on a double by Briles to right. Hayden Skirvin ended the scoring in the Pilgrim half of the first inning with another double to score Briles and put Plymouth up 5-3.
Wawasee cut the lead to one run in the top of the second.
With one out, Shear was hit by a pitch and moved up to second base on a single by Reinhard. Peters made a nice move in the next at-bat to try to pick Shears off, but his throw to third base was errant and allowed Shear to score. Peters struck out Sorensen and got Navarro to ground out to short to end the inning.
Plymouth continued on its doubles streak in the second inning and picked up two more runs.
Knapp hit his second double of the game to the fence in left and Flynn scored him on a double down the first base line. Seagraves moved Flynn to third base with a groundout to short, and Kastner scored him with another groundout to the shortstop.
Wawasee scored again in the fourth.
Peters walked Andrew Milligan, hit Shear for a second time and walked Reinhard to load the bases before the Plymouth coaching staff made a change on the mound and brought in Jordan Scheetz.
Scheetz threw his first pitch to the backstop, allowing Milligan to score, but he was able to get a groundout and two strikeouts to contain the Warrior damage to only one run and preserve the 7-5 lead.
Plymouth added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning.
Peters hit a ground ball through the left side of the infield and stole second base, and he scored a few hitters later on a ground ball down the third baseline by Kastner.
The Pilgrims picked up two much-needed runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Flynn singled to right with one out and Seagraves fought off a breaking ball that found some grass in left field to put runners at first and second. Kastner used his second double of the game to score Flynn. Pinch runner Jacob Frantz scored on a groundout by pinch hitter Cole Mann to end the scoring for the Pilgrims.
Plymouth coach Tony Plothow liked his team’s offensive performance on the night.
“We had some good at bats in the last few innings just to get that cushion,” he said. “Cole Mann’s at-bat really helped, we just needed a ground ball and he did that. We had some good situational hitting tonight.”
Wawasee decided it wasn’t going to go down easy in the seventh.
Hare started the inning with a homerun to left field to cut the Plymouth lead to four. The Warriors followed that up with five straight singles. Gabe Rhodes hit a ground ball up the middle and John Beer followed that up with a single to the gap in the right side of the infield. Jordan Currie hit his single up the middle in the next at-bat to score Rhodes and advance to second base on a throwing error that also moved Beer to third base. Pinch hitter Andrew Hepler hit a hard grounder back up the middle that caromed off the glove of Scheetz and allowed Beer to score from third. Shear followed that with a line drive to left that scored Currie and cut the Plymouth lead to one run and runners at first and second with nobody out.
Reinhard laid down a successful sacrifice bunt to push the runners to second and third with one out. Sorensen hit a fly ball to center that should have tied the game for the Warriors, but Hepler slipped while tagging up at third base and wasn’t able to score on the play. Scheetz got the next Wawasee hitter to fly out to center to end the threat and end the game.
Flynn and Kastner led Plymouth offensively with three hits each, and Kastner had four RBIs in the game.
Plymouth improves to 10-11 with the win and evens up its league record at 6-6. The Pilgrims return to action Saturday as it hosts South Bend Clay at Bill Nixon Field. Game time is set for 11 a.m.
• PLYMOUTH 10, WAWASEE 9
Wawasee: 310 100 4 – 9 9 1
Plymouth: 520 102 x – 10 15 4
Chase Peters, Jordan Scheetz (4, W) and Jacob Seagraves; Drew Anderson (L) Jordan Currie (4) and Si Shear
2B: Joe Knapp 2 (P), Connor Flynn 2 (P), Ike Kastner 2 (P), Trenton Briles (P), Hayden Skirvin (P)
HR: Nate Hare (W)
Records: Plymouth 10-11 (6-6 NLC), Wawasee 5-16 (2-10 NLC)