By Coach Harv Antle
PLATO, Mo. — The Licking Wildcats blanked the Plato Eagles 13-0 in five innings Tuesday night, May 10, at Plato.
Three Wildcat pitchers teamed up to shutout Plato on one hit. Kannon Buckner opened with two innings of scoreless work and fanned two.
Rusty Buckner also pitched two innings, getting credit for the win. The sophomore struck out five of the seven batters he faced.
Elijah Ullom worked the fifth and kept the shutout intact despite allowing a hit. Licking’s pitchers received plenty of offensive support.
The Wildcats racked up 13 runs on 13 hits. Kannon Buckner led the attack with a 4-for-4 night that included a triple and two RBIs.
Cole Wallace, Rusty Buckner, and Keyton Cook all turned in two-hit performances. Logan Gorman added a hit and two runs-batted-in.
With the win, Licking is 16-3 for the spring. Licking made it a clean sweep with a victory in the JV game.
The JV Cats beat Plato 29-2 and improved to 6-4 on the season.
Logan Gorman and Alex Buckner teamed up on the mound to limit Plato to two runs on two hits. Meanwhile, every hitter in the Licking lineup reached base and scored.
Garrett Gorman had a big day to lead the ‘Cats offense. He went 4-for-5 with a double, three RBIs, and five runs scored.
Logan Gorman collected two hits and scored three times, Kale Cook knocked in three runs and doubled in the game, Jordan Ritz was 2-for-5, Cole McCloy doubled and singled, while Brently Morris doubled and scored three runs.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The Licking Wildcats traveled to Springfield on Thursday night and lost to Springfield Catholic 10-4.
Plagued by errors and a huge Catholic second inning, Licking saw its four-game winning streak snapped. The Fighting Irish scored once in the first before erupting for seven in the second to take a commanding 8-0 lead.
The Wildcats staved off the run rule and actually outscored Catholic the rest of the way, but the damage had been done. Logan Ripper delivered the big blow in the second, a two-out grand slam.
In the game, Licking committed five errors that led to six unearned runs.
“You can’t do that against mediocre teams and win, let alone a good team like Springfield Catholic,” commented Coach Harv Antle following the contest.
Austin Stephens took the loss on the mound for Licking. He was charged with eight runs, three earned, in two innings.
Silas Antle and Keyton Cook both worked two innings in relief. Antle allowed two runs, one earned, and Cook spun a pair of scoreless frames.
Offensively for Licking, Cook went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI. Rusty Buckner doubled in two runs, while Keyton Rinne and Stephens added singles and Silas Antle contributed a single and an RBI.
Licking closes the regular season with a record of 16-4 and takes the number one seed into the Class 3 District 9 Tournament at Hartville next week.
In the JV contest, Licking fell to the Irish 2-1 in seven innings. Brently Morris, Kale Cook and Garrett Gorman combined on the mound to limit Catholic to two runs on just three hits.
The Irish pitching was just as effective however, as the Wildcats managed just one run on four hits and stranded eight runners on base. Cook finished with a 2-for-3 night while Kannon Buckner and Logan Gorman added singles to the offensive effort.
The game marked the end of the JV ‘Cats spring season. Licking finished 6-5 this spring and 16-8 overall, fall and spring combined.