By Coach Harv Antle
OZARK, Mo. – In a game moved to U.S. Ballpark in Ozark due to field conditions, the Licking Wildcats edged the Hartville Eagles 5-4 on Monday night.
Hartville took an early three-run lead only to see the Wildcats come from behind and take the game, which held district seeding implications. Licking rallied with two runs in the top of the third.
Malachi Antle and Rusty Buckner collected RBI hits to draw Licking within a run. In the fourth, the Wildcats grabbed a 5-3 lead with a trio of runs, all with two outs.
Kannon Buckner’s single tied the game and Cole Wallace’s hot shot was misplayed for two more runs. Meanwhile, Licking’s Keyton Cook came on in relief in the third and held the Eagles scoreless in his four innings.
Cook allowed two hits, pitched around five walks and struck out eight. His defense helped him get out of a fifth-inning jam with a nifty 6-4-3 double play.
Silas Antle gave an unearned run in the seventh but earned the save. Rusty Buckner and Wallace led the offense with 2-for-4 and 3-for-4 nights, respectively.
With the win, Licking moves to 13-3 on the season. Also, the victory puts the Wildcats in the conversation for the top seed in the upcoming district tournament.
Hartville won the JV game 3-2. Kale Cook started and received a no decision after three innings in which he struck out eight but allowed two runs on one hit and two walks.
Brently Morris took the loss with an inning of work. He gave one run on one hit and walked two.
Garrett Gorman was 2-for-3 with a run scored in a losing cause for Licking. Cook picked up an RBI single and Jordan Ritz tripled.
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Mo. – The Licking Wildcats knocked off another district opponent on Tuesday with a 15-5 win at Mountain View-Liberty.
Cole Wallace picked up the win on the mound for Licking. The junior worked three innings and gave two runs, none earned, on four hits.
Austin Stephens worked the final two frames and did not allow a run as the win moved Licking to 14-3 on the spring. The Wildcats posted 15 runs on 13 hits in support of their pitchers.
Wallace helped himself with two hits and three runs scored. Malachi Antle went 3-for-5, Rusty Buckner and Silas Antle had a hit and an RBI, and Keyton Rinne was 2-for-4.
Keyton Cook and Kannon Buckner carried the big bats for Licking. Cook hit a pair of three-run home runs and knocked in six runs while Buckner was 2-for-4 with four RBIs.
The JV Cats completed the sweep with a 3-1 victory in the nightcap. Garrett Gorman went the distance on the mound for the win.
Gorman permitted one run on one hit, fanned five, and walked one. The win put the JV Wildcats back over the .500 mark at 5-4.
Gorman was 1-for-2 at the plate with a run scored for Licking. Kale Cook singled and knocked in a run, Brently Morris singled, and Derek Mendenhall singled in a run.