LA CENTER — Hickman County ended the first week of the high school baseball the same way it opened; scoring eight runs in a win over Ballard Memorial. On Monday, it was an 8-1 triumph in Clinton. On Saturday, it was an 8-2 road victory.
For Falcon coach Billie Prince, it was a solid effort from his squad that still left room for improvement.
"They shot themselves in the foot a couple of times," Prince said of his hosts afterwards. "They gave us some runs and we took advantage of their errors. We're not hitting very well with runners in scoring position. We could have blown the game open a couple of times."
Hickman earned its first in the second off back-to-back doubles from Micah Naranjo and Eli Prince. With one out in the third, the Falcons started adding some insurance. Jackson Midyett and Walker McClanahan both singled with Midyett taking second on a wild pitch and reaching third off McClanahan's hit to right field. Kaleb Harper then put the Falcons in sole possessin of any momentum with a double to center that brought both runners home for a 3-0 lead.
Though Naranjo had a great day at the plate going 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI, his contributions did not stop there. He pitched into the seventh inning for the win; allowing nine hits on the day plus both Bomber runs in the sixth. Naranjo struck out six Ballard batters, including back-to-back Ks in the fourth and one that ended a sixth where the Bombers threatened to get back in it with runners on the corners.
The Falcons also played a solid sixth with two runs of their own off Bomber miscues. A walk and two singles loaded the bases for Eli Prince. A wild pitch scored one run and a fielder's choice out at second scored another. Ballard retired the side in just the first and seventh innings.
Hickman faced Ballard and Murray twice each this past week and emerged with a 3-1 record. Coach Prince is definitely looking forward to a larger variety of competition in the coming weeks.
"We've got a lot of sore arms and high pitch counts now," Prince said of his team. "We've thrown about eight different pitchers but we're looking forward to Class A coming up and a pretty competitive bunch of teams there."
Hickman County 012 122 0 8 14 0
Ballard Memorial 000 002 0 2 9 1
WP: M. Naranjo. LP: Ha. Buchanan.
2B: H-M. Naranjo 2, Harper, Prince; B-Romaine. 3B: none. HR: none. Top hitters: H-Harper 2-4 (RBI), M. Naranjo 3-4 (RBI), C. Naranjo 2-4 (RBI), Clark 2-4 (RBI); B-Hu. Buchanan 2-3, Nichols 2-3. Records: Ballard 0-2, Hickman 3-1.
Tilghman 7, Westview 2 — At Union City, Tenn., Down 2-0 after four innings, Paducah Tilghman grabbed the lead with three runs in the fifth and built its edge from there to win the championship of the L.H. Ladd Memorial Baseball Classic.
The Tornado trailed 2-1 with the bases loaded and two out in the fifth. Jaylen Seay singled the first pitch he saw to score two before Leyton Patterson was out at third. After Jack Hutcheson brought a run home in the sixth, Gunner Massey, Patterson and Seay all doubled to score two more and put the game out of the Chargers' reach.
After Westview got its runs in the first, Justin West settled down to strike out 10 over six innings for the victory. Seay finished the game 2-fpr-4 with three RBI while Ty Simpson was 2-for-3 with an RBI for the Chargers.
Paducah Tilghman 000 031 3 7 11 0
Martin Westview 200 000 0 2 7 1
WP: West. LP: Johns
2B: T-Massey, Patterson, Hutcheson, Nunn; W-Simpson. 3B: none. HR: none. Top hitters: T-Seay 2-4 (3 RBI), Patterson 2-3 (RBI), Kiebler 2-4 (RBI), Hutcheson 3-3 (RBI); W-Simpson 2-3 (RBI). Records: Tilghman 5-0, Westview 9-2.
McCracken 14-6, Greenwood 2-2 — At Bowling Green, McCracken County dominated the opener and rallied late in the nightcap to sweep a doubleheader at Greenwood.
Ben Higdon went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI on top of striking out eight Gator batters over the first four innings for the win. Dylan Riley also went 3-for-4 with for RBI for the Mustangs.
Greenwood led the second game 2-1 going into the seventh, where McCracken put up five runs to pull off the comeback. The Mustangs tied it when Rivers Moffatt was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Jack Bennett immediately followed that by clearing the bases with a double to left for the 5-2 lead. Higdon had three more hits in this contest.
McCracken County 405 32 14 15 3
Greenwood 000 02 2 3 2
WP: Higdon. LP: Scheer.
2B: M-Higdon 2, Riley, Vinyard. 3B: none. HR: M-Lang (1 on in 4th), Riley (none on in 4th). Top hitters: M-Higdon 3-4 (2 RBI), Moffatt 2-5, Vinyard 2-2 (3 RBI), Lang 1-4 (2 RBI), Riley 3-4 (4 RBI).
McCracken County 001 000 5 6 6 0
Greenwood 100 010 0 2 5 1
WP: Tucker. LP: Garner.
2B: M-Bennett; G-Dysholm. 3B: none. HR: none. Top hitters: M-Higdon 3-3 (RBI), Bennett 1-4 (3 RBI), Godwin 2-4 (RBI); G-Dysholm 2-2 (RBI). Records: McCrakcen 3-0, Greenwood 2-3.
In other Saturday diamond action, Graves County dominated a round-robin in Smithland with an 11-1 win over Webster County and a 16-0 pounding of Livinston Central. In the other game at this gathering, the Cardinals edged the Trojans 10-9. In Murray, Scott County took care of Calloway County 11-4 while Murray tamed University Heights 8-1. Lyon County crushed Christian County 15-0 in Eddyville.
Lady Titan Classic — At Harrodsburg, McCracken County and Marshall County both represented the First Region at this event. The Marshals won both of their games in routs. The Mustangs won their first two in shutouts before dropping a close one to Madison Central.
Marshall trailed Franklin County 3-2 after two innings, then grabbed the lead with runs in the third and exploded for 10 more in the fourth of a 14-3 triumph. Kinley Edwards, Charley Pursley and Sarenna Tomassi each picked up three hits for the Marshals. Tomassi drove in four runs; three of those on an inside-the-park homer in the fourth. Edwards finished with three RBI; Pursley, two. In the second game against Model, Sarah Stokes smacked a two-run inside-the-park homer in the fourth inning of a 16-1 victory. Marshall got a tougher test from Garrard County with a 10-10 tie going into the bottom of the fourth, where McKenzie Elkins scored on a passed ball followed by an RBI single from Emily Garland in the fifth inning of a 12-10 triumph.
McCracken had a dominating start to its day with a 7-0 win over Cooper and a 10-0 victory over Garrard County. Against the Golden Lions of Garrard, Karleigh Grace Walker doubled twice and drove in two runs. Bailey Watts also had two RBI for McCracken. That all changed in the Mustangs' finale against Madison Central. Haley Sebastian doubled to center in the bottom of the sixth to score Cassidy Hack with the winning Indian run in a 6-5 victory over McCracken. Watts was 3-for-4 for the Mustangs in this one.
McCracken County 004 100 0 5 11 3
Madison Central 104 001 x 6 11 0
WP: Kaylor. LP: Hutchins
2B: MC-Duren; MA-Sebastian. 3B: MC-Smithson. HR: none. Top hitters: MC-Watts 3-4 (RBI), White 2-4, Watson 2-4 (RBI); MA-Sebastian 2-3 (RBI), McCauley 2-2, Hack 2-3. Records: McCracken 3-1, Madison Cen. 1-1.
Lady Falcon Invitational — At Clinton, Calloway County emerged unscathed from this tournament by winning each of its three games; culminating with a 6-1 victory over the hosts from Hickman County. Emerson Grogan had two hits for the Lakers; a double plus a two-run homer to left in the third. Adison Hicks went 3-for-4 for Calloway, who also defeated Butler County 4-0 and Ballard Memorial 6-1. Grogan also hit a homer against the Bombers with a solo shot in the third.
Hickman still impressed by winning its first three games of the day. First, the Falcons edged Ohio County 3-1. Jacey Rose and Anna Howell both had two hits for Hickman with Rose also striking out 10 Eagle batters from the circle. Rose kept it going in the next game by going 2-for-3 with three RBI in a 7-3 win against Hancock County. Against Ballard, Rose smashed a three-run homer to center in the third inning.
The Bombers were just 1-3 on the day. Ballard also lost 7-0 to Butler County but got its first win of the year 5-1 over Ohio County. Kaylee O'Connor cracked a two-run homer in the first inning against the Eagles.
Calloway County 103 002 0 6 8 0
Hickman County 000 100 0 1 7 1
WP: Housden. LP: Rose.
2B: C-E. Grogan; H-Rose, Howell. 3B: none. HR: C-E. Grogan (1 on in 3rd). Top hitters: C-Hicks 3-4, E. Grogan 2-3 (2 RBI), Lax 1-3 (2 RBI); H-Allen 2-3.
Ballard Memorial 001 0 1 1 4
Calloway County 123 0 6 5 0
WP: Powers. LP: McKinney.
2B: none. 3B: none. HR: C-E. Grogan (none on in 3rd). Top hitters: C-B. Grogan 2-2 (RBI).
Ballard Memorial 000 000 0 1 1
Hickman County 203 20x 7 10 0
WP: Rose. LP: McKinney.
2B: H-Batts, Howell, Midyett. 3B: none. HR: H-Rose (2 on in 3rd). Top hitters: H-Rose 2-3 (3 RBI), Critser 2-3 (2 RBI), Skaggs 2-3, Batts 1-2 (2 RBI).
Ballard Memorial 310 001 5 2 0
Ohio County 000 001 1 5 5
WP: Cooper. LP: Decker.
2B: none. 3B: none. HR: B-O'Connor (1 on in 1st). Top hitters: B-O'Connor 1-3 (2 RBI). Records: Ballard 1-5, Hickman 5-1, Calloway 5-1.
In other softball action, Lyon County fell 9-4 to Daviess County and 17-12 to Christian County in Eddyville.