CLINTON – Game 1 of Thursday night’s TRAC-9 baseball tripleheader saw Morrison give up 11 Kewanee runs. Luckily for the Mustangs, their bats were flying too. Through six innings they put up 18 runs of their own on 14 hits, keeping the game well out of reach, winning 18-11.
For head coach Ben Sondgeroth, plate performance was a definite highlight. Defensively, though, he wished his club performed stronger.
“We hit the ball real well, had a nice approach at the plate,” Sondgeroth said. “I don’t think there’s any one hitter that stood out to me. It was a nice team effort at the plate and that’s really what it’s going to take for us to win ballgames.
“But we struggled throwing strikes, and that’s what kept them in the game. Three errors (for us) is a little too many, but then we made some mental breakdowns.”
Having already built a 5-2 lead at the top of the second inning, senior Alex Fischbach drove in another run on an error. Later, the Boilermakers walked in three straight runs, before Bill Lee Greul ripped a two-run double to left-center field.
Kewanee was wild early. Through three innings, the Boilermakers totaled six errors and let multiple runs in with wild pitches. Morrison scored 12 runs on only six hits by the second inning and added another three in the top of the third (thanks to Kewanee mistakes).
Meanwhile, Mustangs pitcher Connor Duncan looked to be in control through the first two innings, allowing only two hits and striking out three in a row in the bottom of the second. Then Morrison errors helped give the Boilermakers something to cheer about.
Duncan walked the leadoff man, gave up two more hits and hit a batter leading to a four-run Kewanee inning. Eventually, Duncan was replaced by Brock Deter, who allowed five more runs in the final four innings.
Sondgeroth pointed to those errors, which in a closer game could’ve been costly. Only four of Kewanee’s runs were earned.
“They’re little things we’re trying to get used to,” he said. “That stuff’s got to get better mentally, but it’ll happen.”
Joey Brackemyer led the team with three hits, an RBI and three runs. Andrew Connelly added two hits, one a double, and four runs and Greul had a three-RBI day on two hits, including a double. Duncan led the team on the mound with six strikeouts and three RBIs at the plate.
MORRISON 18, KEWANEE 11
Morrison 573 201 0 — 18 14 4
Kewanee 204 320 0 — 11 10 9
Morrison — Connor Duncan (3 ip, 6 r, 4 er, 6 h, 1 bb, 6 so), Brock Deter (4 ip, 4 r, 0 er, 4 h, 0 bb, 3 so). Multiple hits — Morrison (Danny Willis 2, Alexander Volckmann 2, Joey Brackemyer 3, Andrew Connelly 2, Bill Lee Greul 2); 2B — Morrison (Connelly, Brackemyer); RBI — Morrison (Volckmann, Connor Duncan 3, Brackemyer, Brock Deter 2, Alex Fischbach, Greul 3)