Baseball - Wildcats win Frisco League Tournament

Photo submitted

Frisco League winners Licking Wildcats. Pictured from left, kneeling, are Malachi Antle, Easton Ice, Cole Wallace, Keyton Rinne, Landon Medlock, Kaiden Wantland and Logan Gorman; standing are Spencer Rogers, Rusty Buckner, Ty Wantland, Keyton Cook, Wilson Murray, Bryce Corley, Silas Antle, Elijah Ullom and Austin Stephens.

By Coach Harv Antle

 

RICHLAND, Mo. – The Licking Wildcats captured the 2020 Frisco League Tournament over the weekend with wins over Plato on Friday and Iberia on Saturday in the championship game.

Licking entered the tournament as the top seed and enjoyed a first round bye. In the semi finals versus Plato on Friday, the Wildcats erupted for 20 first-inning runs and won easily, 27-0.

Wilson Murray pitched the first inning for Licking, and Landon Medlock tossed the final two frames as the game ended after three innings on the run rule. Murray and Medlock combined to no-hit the Eagles and strike out five over three innings.

Murray, Malachi Antle, Spencer Rogers and Rusty Buckner all collected two hits to pace a 15-hit Wildcat offensive attack. Murray picked up two RBIs, Keyton Rinne and Antle drove in three, and Easton Ice knocked in two runs, as did Kaiden Wantland, while Cole Wallace scored three runs.

In the championship game versus Iberia on Saturday, the Wildcats won a high scoring affair, 16-10, over the Rangers. In the top of the first, Iberia plated five runs and chased Licking starter Cole Wallace.

Wilson Murray relieved and held the Rangers in check over the next four innings while Licking’s offense rallied. A six-run second inning propelled the Wildcats into the lead and they added four more tallies in the third to take a 10-5 lead.

Keyton Cook replaced a fatigued Murray in the fifth and wriggled out of a bases-loaded jam. Iberia was threatening with one run in, the bases loaded, and the tying run at the plate when Cook snuffed out the rally with a pair of strikeouts.

Licking added a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth to move in front, 12-6, only to see Iberia answer with four in the top of the sixth. The big blow was a two-run homer off the bat of Wade Bond.

The Wildcats clung to a 12-10 lead as they came to bat in the bottom of the sixth. RBI doubles from Wallace and Easton Ice were part of a four-run answer from Licking and provided the final margin of victory.

Murray recorded the win for Licking with three and one-third innings of work. He allowed one run on one hit, walked four, and fanned three.

Cook earned the save with two and two-thirds innings. He did not issue a walk, struck out five and was charged with three earned runs.

Wallace enjoyed a 2-for-3 day at the plate for the winners that included a double, a triple, and four RBIs. Ice drove in four runs on two hits, Malachi Antle ripped a key triple with the bases loaded, and Spencer Rogers delivered a two-run double in the second to start the Wildcat comeback.

 “I’m happy for the players,” Licking’s Harv Antle said following the game. “The tournament title is something that has eluded us for the last few years, and while it didn’t look promising early on today, they really dug their heels in and fought to come back and hang on to win. They showed some grit; we’re proud of their efforts and it’s gratifying to see those efforts rewarded.”

MANSFIELD, Mo. - Taking advantage of their bye in the conference tournament, the Licking Wildcats traveled to Mansfield on Tuesday night and beat the Lions 14-3.

Licking led 6-0 after two frames, only to see Mansfield climb back into the game with a pair of runs in the third and one in the fourth. The Wildcats answered loudly in the sixth.

With two on and two outs, Licking erupted for eight runs to put the game away. The win was the second in a row for the Wildcats and moved their record to 3-1 for the fall.

Cole Wallace got the Wildcat win as the sophomore went five innings, scattered six hits, and was charged with three runs, two earned. He fanned one and did not walk a batter.

Licking swatted 11 hits in the contest. Keyton Cook showed the way for the winners with a 3-for-5 performance that included two doubles and two runs scored. Wilson Murray scored three times as part of a 2-for-4 night. Wallace stroked a pair of hits, Malachi Antle went 1-for-3 with two RBIs, Easton Ice clubbed an RBI double as did Silas Antle, and Kaiden Wantland notched a single and run-batted-in.

Licking won the JV game 6-5, rallying from a 4-2 deficit with four runs in the last inning. Elijah Ullom picked up the win with two innings of hitless relief in back of starter Logan Gorman, who went the first two innings.

Ullom cracked a pair of singles for the JV Cats. Derek Mendenhall went 2-for-3, Austin Stephens had a pair of hits, and Ty Wantland scored twice.

The JV Cats improved to 2-0 with the victory.

LICKING, Mo. – In a game that was added to the schedule, the Licking Wildcats defeated the Plato Eagles on Friday, Sept. 4, 16-1, in the home opener of the fall season.

Licking jumped Plato for five runs with two outs in the bottom of the first. Easton Ice singled in Malachi Antle to open the scoring.

The Wildcats batted around in the bottom of the third and plated 11 runs to end the game on the run rule. Ice, Keyton Cook, and Silas Antle doubled in the frame.

Silas Antle started on the mound and picked up the win. He allowed no runs over two innings, fanned five, and did not surrender a hit.

Wilson Murray worked the third inning for Licking. The senior gave one run on a pair of hits as the Wildcats moved to 2-1 on the season.

Offensively, Murray drove in a run and reached base twice. Malachi Antle singled and scored twice, Ice went 2-for-3 with three RBIs, Cook doubled and scored three runs, Keyton Rinne singled and scored twice, and Elijah Ullom ripped a 2-run single.

Licking will travel to Mansfield on Sept. 8 and then head to Richland on Thursday, Sept. 10, for the Frisco League Tournament. The Wildcats are the number one seed and will play the winner of Plato-Crocker.


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