Post 27 drops doubleheader in Muncie

MUNCIE — Sunday was a rough day for Post 27.
The Diamond Spyders dropped both games of a doubleheader, losing the first 9-4 and the second game 9-8 to Post 19 on the road in Muncie.
Things started out well for Plymouth.
Sean Knepper led off with a walk and back-to-back errors by Muncie on bunts by the Diamond Spyders loaded the bases with no outs. Brody Andrews hit a sacrifice fly to left to plate Knepper with the first run of the game. Tanner Andrews followed with an RBI single to right to score Brock Anson. He moved to third base on a single to right by Eric Knepper and scored when Nick Latham grounded one up the middle to put the Diamond Spyders up 3-0.
Post 27 picked up another run in the second. Shay Hepler singled to right and stole second base during the next at-bat. Sean Knepper moved him over to third base with a single through the whole on the right side of the infield. Hepler scored on the play when the right fielder bobbled the ball and wasn’t able to make a play on him at the plate.
That was all the offense that the Diamond Spyders would see.
Post 19 starter Skyler Reis pitched through the next five innings without allowing a hit and striking out eight Post 27 hitters over that span. Reis didn’t allow an earned run in the contest.
“We had some dead innings were we didn’t get much going,” said Plymouth head coach Tony Plothow. “We did hit the ball hard sometimes, but they made good plays and we didn’t get anything to show for it.”
Muncie didn’t have the same offensive woes. Post 19 picked up five runs in the second to take the lead for good.
Brooks Mace led the inning off with a double to right center field. Austin Conway traded places with him on a double of his own to score Mace. A wild pitch by Plymouth starter Clayton Adamson moved Conway to third with no outs. A sacrifice fly to center brought Conway home for the second score of the inning. After a groundout to second base by Rob Fox, it looked like Post 27 would escape only giving up the two runs, but an error at third base by Anson opened the door for Muncie.
Trevor Hughes reached on the error, and a single by Jon Miller moved him up a base. Joe Drago laid down a perfect bunt for a hit to load the bases with two outs. All three runs scored on a shot to right center field by Taran Temple to put the hosts up 5-4.
Muncie tacked on an insurance run in the third and three more in the sixth to cap off the 9-4 victory.
At Muncie
Plymouth: 310 000 0 – 4 5 2
Muncie: 051 030 x – 9 13 3
WP: Skyler Reis
LP: Clayton Adamson
2B: Austin Conway 2 (M), Taran Temple (M), Brooks Mace (M)
The second game saw much of the same action for the Diamond Spyders. Plymouth jumped out to another early lead and failed to continue its offensive performance to outlast the slugging of Post 19.
Plymouth picked up the early lead in the second inning this time around.
Eric Knepper singled to right and moved up to second base on an error when the right fielder bobbled the ball. He scored moments later on a single by Trent Briles. A third straight single, this one by Riley Cartwright put runners at first and second with no outs. Peter Shepherd laid down a bunt that was misplayed by the pitcher to load the bases. Wally Dickman followed that up with the fourth single of the inning for the Diamond Spyders to plate Briles and Cartwright and put Post 27 up two runs. Two more runs scored on a single by Sean Knepper to up the score to 5-1. Dickman and Knepper scored two hitters later when Tanner Andrews singled to right and moved to second base on another error by the right fielder. Tanner moved to third on a single by Brody Andrews and scored on Eric Knepper’s second hit of the inning, this time a to double center field to put the Diamond Spyders up 7-1.
Plymouth again sputtered offensively through the middle innings. Post 27 went hitless over the next four innings.
Muncie continued flexing it muscle offensively against Post 27 as it answered with three runs in the bottom of the second.
Brooks Mace reached on an error by Dickman in right field and scored on a double by Austin Conway. Conway scored two hitters later when Rob Fox singled up the middle. A hit batsman and a bunt for a hit by Joe Drago loaded the bases with one out for Muncie. Jon Miller belted a sacrifice fly to left to score Fox and cut the Post 27 lead to three.
Muncie chipped away at the lead with another run in the third when Mace reached on a fielder’s choice and scored after an error by Sean Knepper at shortstop.
Post 19 took the lead with three runs in the fourth.
Drago led off with an infield single to second base and moved up to second on a wild pitch by Plymouth reliever Wes Burkholder. Miller walked to put runners at first and second with no outs. Heath Reynolds singled two hitters later to drive home Drago and put runners at the corners. With two outs, Conway singled in Miller and Reynolds to put Post 19 up 8-7.
Plymouth was finally able to find just enough offense to tie the game in the seventh.
Tanner Andrews led off the inning with a single, stole second base and moved to third when the throw from the catcher went into center field. He scored to tie the game on Brody Andrews’ single to left. But Muncie brought in relief pitcher Drew Featherston, and he struck out the next three Diamond Spyders to end the inning.
Rob Fox led the bottom of the seventh off with a single, and Trevor Hughes sacrificed him to second base. Drago hit another infield single to second base to put runners on the corners with only one out. Plymouth intentionally walked Miller to load the bases and make it a do-or-die situation at the plate for the win.
With the infield in, Taran Temple hit a sharp ground ball that was snagged by a diving Riley Cartwright at third base. He was able to throw from his knees to home plate to prevent the run from scoring, but Skyler Reis ended the game in the next at-bat with a single to left field to score Drago.
Plothow was disappointed in his team’s effort.
“We let a couple games get away from us. We worked hard to get leads today, but we also had some lack of effort at times and it cost us,” he said. “I liked how we battled in the second game to tie it up, but we couldn’t find the hit that we needed to take us over the top.”
Plymouth drops to 8-5 with the losses and will return to action Tuesday at Crown Point. The Diamond Spyders return home on Thursday with a contest against South Bend Post 50.
At Muncie
Plymouth: 070 000 1 – 8 11 4
Muncie: 131 300 1 – 9 16 5
WP: Drew Featherston
LP: Tanner Andrews
2B: Eric Knepper (P), Austin Conway (M)