By Coach Harv Antle
RICHLAND, Mo. —The Licking Wildcats remained unbeaten with a 16-6 victory over the Richland Bears on Monday night, April 4, at Shady Dell Park.
The Wildcats raced in front 8-0, only to see the Bears claw their way back into the game. At the end of four innings, Licking held a 9-4 advantage.
Richland tightened the game further with two runs in the sixth. Licking regrouped and scored seven times in the last inning for the win.
Licking racked up 12 hits in the contest but left nine runners on base. Malachi Antle, Silas Antle, Rusty Buckner and Keyton Rinne all produced multi-hit games for the Wildcats.
Cook and Rinne drove in two runs while Malachi and Silas Antle drove in three for Licking. Cole Wallace scored three times as the Wildcats improved to 6-0 on the spring.
Licking used four pitchers in the game. Kannon Buckner was the starter and picked up the win. Elijah Ullom, Austin Stephens and Keyton Cook all logged innings out of the bullpen.
Wildcat pitchers allowed just three hits and fanned 11, but six walks and some shoddy defense behind them limited their effectiveness.
Licking won the JV game 5-1. Logan Gorman registered the win on the mound as he worked two innings and fanned four.
Garrett Gorman ripped a two-run double for the Wildcats who improved to 2-1 with the victory. Alex Buckner had an RBI double while Jordan Ritz and Cole McCloy both singled and scored a run.
IBERIA, Mo. — The Licking Wildcats saw their six-game winning streak snapped on Tuesday night, April 5, with a 7-0 loss to Iberia at Hooper Field.
“It was one of those nights,” commented Licking’s Harv Antle. “We didn’t hit it, pitch it or field it.”
Iberia scored single runs in the first and second. Meanwhile, Licking left two runners on in the first and left the bases loaded in the third but never scored.
A three-run fourth effectively put the game on ice for Iberia. Licking mustered just one base hit on the night and dropped to 6-1 with the loss.
Rusty Buckner was the losing pitcher for Licking. Spencer Rogers registered the lone Wildcat hit.
The JV Wildcats salvaged a split in the nightcap with an 8-0 victory and raised their record to 3-1 for the spring. Alex Buckner was the winning pitcher with three innings of shutout ball.
Buckner allowed one hit, fanned two, and did not walk a batter. Brently Morris finished the game with two scoreless frames and struck out the side in the fifth.
Buckner also doubled in the contest and scored a run. Kannon Buckner scored twice and was 1-for-1 with a pair of walks, Garrett Gorman singled and scored, while Morris and Cole McCloy contributed RBIs.
NORWOOD, Mo. — The Licking Wildcats shutout the Norwood Pirates 1-0 at Norwood on Thursday night, April 6.
Cole Wallace and Keyton Cook combined to limit Norwood to four hits and were supported by errorless defense in the victory. The win raised Licking’s record to 7-1 for the spring.
Wallace worked the first three innings for Licking. He allowed two hits and fanned four with no walks.
Cook picked up the win with four innings of relief. He worked around two hits and two walks while he struck out four.
While Licking’s pitching and defense were strong, the offense was not. The Wildcats were blanked through six innings on just four hits.
Keyton Rinne led off the top of the seventh with a walk. Two wild pitches and a passed ball later, Rinne crossed the plate with the game’s lone run.
In addition to his good night on the mound, Wallace had a good night at the plate, going 2-for-4. Cook singled and stole a base, Rusty Buckner went 1-for-3 and Rinne finished the night 1-for-2.
No JV game was played on Thursday.
HERMANN, Mo. – On Saturday, April 9, the Licking Wildcats traveled to Hermann to take on Cuba and Hermann in a varsity doubleheader, emerging with two more victories. In the opener, Licking defeated Cuba 17-5.
Licking jumped to an early 6-1 lead only to see Cuba close within a run after three innings. From there it was all Licking as the Wildcats won going away to move to 8-1 on the spring.
Kannon Buckner, the second of four Licking hurlers, got the win on the mound. He toiled three innings and gave three runs on four hits while striking out six. Elijah Ullom started and went the first two innings and was charged with two runs, while Rusty Buckner and Austin Stephens logged an inning each in the win.
Cole Wallace went 2-for-4 with three runs scored to pace the Wildcat offense. Malachi Antle knocked in four runs, Silas Antle drove in three, while Rusty Buckner and Stephens each had two RBIs and Keyton Rinne turned in a 2-for-4 game at the plate. Keyton Cook added a 1-for-3 day that included two runs scored and two stolen bases.
Licking scored in every inning but one in posting a 16-7 win over the Bearcats of Hermann on Saturday.
The Wildcats put up 16 runs on 17 hits to win their third straight game and improve to 9-1 on the spring. Cole Wallace, Malachi Antle, Silas Antle, Rusty Buckner, Keyton Rinne, Logan Gorman, and Elijah Ullom all recorded multi-hit games for Licking.
Austin Stephens started for Licking and worked the first two innings. He was charged with four runs, three earned, on three hits.
Silas Antle came to the mound in the third and went the rest of the way to get the win. He gave three runs, two earned, on three hits and struck out eight.