Baseball season opens with a split

 

By Coach Harv Antle

OZARK, Mo. – The Licking Wildcats opened the fall season with a pair of varsity games at US Ballpark in Ozark over the weekend, taking on the Purdy Eagles and Crane Pirates.

The Wildcats finished the day with a split. Licking edged Purdy 5-2 and dropped the nightcap to Crane 10-4.

In the opener versus Purdy, Wilson Murray picked up the win with six innings of work. The senior allowed two runs, none earned, on seven hits and fanned four. Cole Wallace worked a scoreless seventh to record the save and registered a pair of strikeouts.

Malachi Antle paced the offense with two hits in four trips to the plate. The sophomore catcher ripped two triples and drove in three runs.

Keyton Cook was 2-for-3 for Licking, Keyton Rinne doubled and started an inning-ending double play in the sixth to thwart a Purdy rally.

In the second game, Licking led 3-1 in the fourth inning with two outs when the wheels came off. Crane scored five runs to take a 6-3 lead and never looked back.

Wallace started and logged three and two-thirds innings. He was charged with six runs but was plagued by shaky defense as only one of those runs was earned. In the game, the Wildcats committed three errors.

Licking outhit Crane, recording 11 hits to Crane’s eight. However, timely hits were missing as the Wildcats stranded 13 runners in the contest.

Rinne, Murray, and Cook all banged out a pair of hits each, with Rinne driving in two runs. Easton Ice doubled while Silas Antle singled and reached base twice, and Rusty Buckner was on base two times in three plate appearances.


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