Friday, April 27, 2018

BASEBALL: No. 6 Red Devils smack 19 hits to down No. 5 Providence, 13-7

Special to Southern Indiana Preps
CLARKSVILLE — To say that the Jeffersonville baseball team has had a good two days is an understatement of great magnitude.
Wednesday the Class 4A No. 6 Red Devils easily handled Class 3A No. 4 Silver Creek with a 9-2 victory. They followed that up with exclamation points on Thursday. The visiting Red Devils dominated Class 3A No. 5 Providence by a 13-7 score.
The final margin is not indicative of how far the Red Devils (9-4) kept Providence out of reach. The Pioneers (10-2) ran four runs across the plate in the last of the seventh inning to make the score more respectable.
"It was a long night," said Providence coach Scott Hornung. "It was three hours of not very much fun. We just did not do our part. We did not do our job. We have to do better than that."
Jeffersonville opened the game with two runs in the first inning and never looked back. In fact, the Red Devils scored two runs in every inning except for the fourth, when they scored just once.
Jeff coach Derek Ellis was pleased in his team's performance. He especially liked the contributions of the bottom third of his lineup.
"We swung well," said Ellis. "We finally got production out of the bottom of our lineup. We've been looking for that for a while. It took a little pressure off the guys at the top."
Jeff's Conner Christopher, Dylan Robinson and Trey Bottorff — the No. 7, 8, and 9 hitters — combined for seven hits. In addition, Ben Harbeson, a late substitute for Christopher, rapped a single in his only at-bat.
The entire team was hot with the bat. The Red Devils rapped out 19 hits for the game, and every starter had at least one hit.
Seven Jeff players collected at least two hits, and Bottorff and teammate Blayden McMahel each knocked three hits.
By the same token, Providence did little of anything to help its own cause. Shoddy play, both physical and mental, plagued the Pioneers.
"We got off to a good start, but they're probably kicking themselves over there," said Ellis. "They made some mistakes that kept us going. You don't normally get that from Providence."
Hornung could not have agreed more with Ellis’ assessment.
“They (Jeff) hit, but we were also bad," said Hornung. "They were good and we were bad. Their approach was better than ours. The final score is not an indication of the dominance they had on us tonight. They did better than us in every aspect of the game."
Besides the hitting, Christopher put the clamps down on Providence's offense through five innings. Christopher, who ran his record to 4-0, limited the Pioneers to only three hits through their first five at-bats.
"Conner did great," said Ellis. “He's not overpowering. But he's got nice stuff, a lot of movement and he keeps you off balance. He threw a few more pitches than I wanted him to, but he did really well."
For the game, Christopher went 5 2/3 innings, giving up five base hits, three runs (only one earned), struck out four and walked three.
Providence started hitting him better in the sixth inning, and Ellis replaced him with Harbeson, who finished the game.
The bottom of the seventh saw the Pioneers collect five hits in the four-run inning. The last two innings, Providence accumulated eight of its 11 base hits.
Joe Wilkinson absorbed the loss for the Pioneers, dropping his record to 1-1. He surrendered six runs (four earned), while giving up seven hits in 2 1/3 innings.
Zach Tackett relieved Wilkinson in the third, and he pitched the next 3 2/3 innings, giving up five runs on 10 hits. Teammate Nathan Proctor finished the game, giving up two runs.
Providence will return to action on Friday, traveling to Floyd Central for a 7 p.m. game.
Jeffersonville will travel to Jasper on Saturday for a noon game.

Jeff                222 122 2—13 19 3
Providence    020 010 4—  7 11 3
W — Conner Christopher (4-0). L — Joe Wilkinson (1-1).  2B — Christopher (J), Gabe Bierman (J).
Records: Jeff 9-4, Providence 10-2.
Multiple hit players: Jeff — Blayden McMahel 3-5, Trey Bottorff 3-5, Jack Ellis 2-3, Ethan English 2-4, Bierman 2-4, Christopher 2-4, Dylan Robinson 2-4; Providence — Nick Sexton 2-5, Nathan Proctor 2-4, Preston Taylor 2-3.
Christopher pitching line: 5 2/3 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 4 K, 3 BB.
Wilkinson pitching line: 2 1/3 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 3 K, 2 BB.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

BASEBALL: Graf’s all-around effort leads Pioneers past Avon, 6-2

Special to Southern Indiana Preps
CLARKSVILLE — Providence junior Christian Graf did a whole lot on Friday night against visiting Avon.
Graf did not do everything, but his contributions to the 6-2 win were impressive and significant.
First, he picked up his third win on the mound for the season without a loss. He did so in outstanding fashion, pitching six shutout innings, surrendering only three base hits — all singles - while striking out four and issuing just two bases on balls.
"Christian had a great night," said Providence coach Scott Hornung, who saw his team up its record to 9-1 on the season. The performance was not just good in itself, but it helped the team in another way.
"We're mending arms right now and trying to work through it. It's good to have that security blanket right there," said Hornung.
Graf's work was not confined to his pitching duties, however. He also had a big night at the plate, going to 2-for-3. Each of his hits were for extra bases, with a double in the third inning and a two-run homer in the fifth.
"We changed the lineup around a little bit tonight," said Hornung. "We moved him (Graf) up to No. 5 in the lineup because he had been hitting so good. It's good to see he's doing that for us, too."
For the second consecutive game, the Pioneers struck for two runs in their first at-bat, setting the tone for the rest of the game.
Kaden Williams led off the bottom of the first with a sharp single. The next batter, Adam Uhl, was hit by a pitch, sending Williams to second. Timmy Borden then smacked a double, scoring Williams and Uhl for a 2-0 lead.
"It makes things better, and you can do a lot coaching by jumping out to an early lead," said Hornung.
The Class 3A No. 9 Pioneers plated two more runs in the third. Borden led off by being hit by a pitch. One out later, Graf doubled, sending Borden to third. Borden then scored on an RBI groundout to second by Joe Wilkinson. Josh Tackett then singled home Graf to make the advantage, 4-0.
Providence scored its final two runs in the bottom of the fifth. With one out, Eli Watson walked. Graf came to the plate and smacked a homer to the gap in left-center field, scoring Nick Sexton, a pinch runner for Watson, along with himself.
This knocked out Avon starter Austin Baugh (0-1). It also ended Providence's scoring for the day.
Graf cruised throughout the game. He faced only 23 batters in six innings of work.
Tackett relieved Graf in the final inning. Graf had thrown about 85 pitches, and Hornung was not interested in overthrowing his hurler early in the season.
Avon (8-3) finally scored in the top of the seventh. Bishop Akers drove in Conner Albert with a sacrifice fly to make the score 6-1. Albert had struck out to open the inning, but had gotten on base when the third strike was a wild pitch. He then moved to second on a throwing error on an attempted pick-off play, and then he advanced to third on a single by Parker Sutton.
Sutton scored the second run on a single by Luke Shayotovich.
Tackett closed down the Orioles by striking out Kyren Power to end the game.
"It was a solid performance by a good team," said Hornung.
Providence will play at home against Class 4A No. 4 Jeffersonville at 7 on Monday evening.

Avon                   000 000 2—2 5 0
Providence         202 202 x—6 6 3
W — Christian Graf (3-0). L — Austin Baugh (0-1). 2B — Timmy Borden (P), Graf (P). HR — Graf (P).
Records: Providence 9-1, Avon 8-3.
Multiple hit players: Providence — Graf 2-3, 2B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBIs.
Graf’s pitching line: 6 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 K, 2 BB.
Baugh’s pitching line: 4.1 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 4 K, 2 BB.

Friday, April 20, 2018

BASEBALL: Hot start lifts No. 9 Pioneers past No. 7 Hornets, 11-2

Special to Southern Indiana Preps
CLARKSVILLE — A rarity occurred at Providence on Thursday night. 
The Class 3A No. 9 Pioneers jumped out to an early lead. For much of this season, Providence has started slowly offensively and come from behind. 
Against Class 2A No. 7 Henryville, though, the Pioneers scored twice in the first inning. They then added three runs more in the bottom of the second. The lead was more than enough, as Providence ran its record to 8-1 in downing Henryville, 11-2.
The final score indicates a blowout. But the game was close and within striking distance for Henryville until the bottom of the sixth inning. The Pioneers pushed across five runs in that frame to stretch a 6-2 lead to the final 11-2 margin. 
"It's frustrating for me," said Henryville coach Jeff Schroeder, whose Hornets fell to 7-2. "If you lose, you lose, but this was not an 11-2 game. We made some mistakes, and we opened the door for them and it cost us some runs." 
Providence plated two in the first inning. Consecutive singles by Timmy Borden and Eli Watson drove in the runs.  
Those runs staked Pioneer freshman pitcher Ray Reisinger to a quick lead in his first varsity start. Reisinger took advantage of his team's early offense. He threw five innings, surrendering one run, which was unearned, scattering five singles, striking out five and not issuing any walks. 
"I am happy that Ray got his first varsity win," said Providence coach Scott Hornung. "He pitched better today than he did (last week) in Indianapolis. He has struggled keeping the ball down, but he'll get that as he progresses." 
Providence tacked three more runs on the board in the second inning to extend the lead to 5-1. A one-out single by Zach Tackett got the rally going. Tackett then stole second base. Preston Taylor followed with an RBI single to make the score 3-0. 
Center fielder Kaden Williams then hit a double to right-center field. Taylor scored on that play as some indecision by the Henryville defense allowed him to proceed home, making it 4-0. 
A short while later, Adam Uhl lifted a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Williams. The Pioneers had things going, leading by a 5-0 score. 
"We hit the ball well," said Hornung. "We had good, solid hits, we got RBIs from people and we hit line drives. 
For the game, the Pioneers rapped out 11 base hits, nine of which were singles. 
Henryville started to come back in the fourth inning, scoring an unearned run. 
Luke Stock was hit by a pitch to begin the inning. That was followed by a single to center field by Kade Badger. However, Williams did not field the ball cleanly, allowing Stock to score. 
Providence tacked another run on in the fifth inning. Borden reached base on an error, stole second and he then scored on a single by Watson, making the score 6-1. 
Each team scored in the sixth inning. Providence's Joe Wilkinson came in relief, finishing Reisinger's day. Stock reached base on an error and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Chase Hines. Henryville trailed 6-2. 
The Pioneers blew the game open in the bottom of the sixth, scoring five times. Henryville hurt itself in the inning, not completing a double play early and then making an error. The Hornets could have escaped without surrendering a run had they made the plays. 
Providence took advantage in a big way. An RBI single by Taylor drove home the first run. The big blast came from Borden, who unloaded a three-run homer for the final three runs of the day, making the score 11-2. Providence sent 10 men to the plate in its half of the sixth. 
"I'm always looking to be better. I'm satisfied that we're 8-1, but we talked about having a little more urgency with panic. Push yourself a little better, be better driven,” said Hornung. “We kicked it around a little bit, and we're striking out too much. Those are the things we want to work on.
Stock was the pitcher of record for Henryville, going five innings. His performance was not a bad one, although he had mixed numbers. The right-hander struck out 10 batters and gave up nine base hits. Stock gave up six runs, five of which were earned. 
"Luke gave us a pretty good effort today, I think," said Schroeder. "When you strike out 10 of those guys, it's pretty good." 
Providence will return to the diamond at 6 Friday night at home against Avon. Henryville will play again at 5 p.m. next Monday at New Washington. 

Henryville          000 101 0—  2  5  2 
Providence         230 015 x—11 11 4 
W — Ray Reisinger (1-0). L — Luke Stock. 2B — Kaden Williams (P). HR — Timmy Borden (P). 
Records: Providence 8-1, Henryville 7-2. 
Multiple hit players: Henryville — Kade Badger 2-2; Providence — Williams 2-3, 2B, 3 R; Borden 2-4, HR, 4 RBIs, 3 R; Eli Watson 2-4, 2 RBIs; Preston Taylor 2-3, RBI, 2 R. 
Reisinger pitching line: 5 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 5 H, 5 K, 0 BB.
Stock pitching line: 5 IP, 6 R, 5 ER, 9 H, 10 K, 0 BB.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

BASEBALL: Huge fifth inning lifts Providence over Morton, 10-2

Special to Southern Indiana Preps
CLARKSVILLE — Providence bided its time in the second game of the Super Prep Tournament on Friday night against Morton High School from Peoria, Ill.
The Class 3A No. 10 Pioneers were held scoreless on one hit over the first four innings. They then exploded for 10 runs over the next two innings to down the visiting Potters by a score of 10-2. The win upped host Providence to 2-0 on the season.
"That's two games in a row where we've been able to come through with some plays offensively," said Providence coach Scott Hornung. "We've seen tough pitching to start the year off with. The pitchers have been tough with both their breaking pitches and their location. I'm really proud of the guys to do that back-to-back nights at the beginning of the nights."
The game appeared to be shaping up as a pitcher's duel through the first four innings. Morton pitcher Logan Peterson held the Pioneers to a single hit through the first four frames. Providence fireballer Joe Wilkinson likewise kept Morton from doing anything as well. The Providence junior held the Potters to one run in the third inning, while scattering three hits through that same time.
The game was Wilkinson's first pitching performance in two seasons. He did not pitch at all last year due to Tommy John surgery. He was dominating in this performance.
Morton (4-2) scored its only run off Wilkinson (1-0) in the third inning. The No. 9 batter in the order, Evan Heal, doubled with one out, and then moved to third on a single by Nick Guerra. Heal scored when the next batter, Evan Pfeifer, laid down a bunt on the squeeze play, making the score 1-0.
Those were the last of the hits off Wilkinson. He went five innings, surrendering three hits, striking out eight and walking just two.
"Wilkinson did excellent, coming off Tommy John the first time out," said Hornung. "He doesn't lose composure, doesn't get rattled. I'm very proud of him. His MO coming up was a hard thrower and not much control, but he's improved quite a bit in that over the years."
Meanwhile, Peterson was coasting along for Morton, striking out six batters over four innings. He would not survive the fifth inning, however, as Providence sent 11 men to the plate. Peterson did not record an out in the inning, and the Pioneers chased him after four batters.
Zach Tackett led off the inning with a hard-hit ball to shortstop, which was misplayed into an error. Christian Graf followed with a double, putting runners on second and third base with no outs. Kaden Williams then walked to load the bases. Preston Taylor was then hit by a pitch, scoring Tackett to tie the game at 1-1.
This ended Peterson's time on the mound, as he was relieved by Vinni Massaglia.
A passed ball and a wild pitch scored Graf and Williams, giving the lead to Providence at 3-1. The Pioneers would never surrender the lead the remainder of the game, but they kept piling on from that point.
Timmy Borden walked to keep the rally going. It then appeared as if the inning was going to be over without any more damage when Adam Uhl popped out to first and Wilkinson struck out. Nathan Proctor got hit by a pitch, however, and Eli Watson doubled home two more runs. Proctor later scored on a wild pitch, and the Pioneers had plated six runs in the inning to build a 6-1 advantage.
The Pioneers batted around again in the sixth inning, scoring four more runs on just two hits. Morton committed two errors, however, helping Providence's cause.
Williams started the inning with a triple to right field, and he scored when the relay throw was mishandled for an error. Again, pitching problems plagued Morton, with a couple of passed balls, and an error by pitcher Brandon Brown set the table for more Providence runs. At this point, Providence led 10-1.
Morton put a single run on the board in its final at-bat against Providence reliever Hunter Sprigler to make the final score 10-2.
The Pioneers will travel to Salem at 5:45 p.m. Wednesday.
Note: Providence’s final game of the Super Prep Tournament on Saturday against Morgan Park (Ill.) was cancelled because of snow.

Morton         001 000 1—  2 6 4
Providence   000 064 x—10 5 0
W — Joe Wilkinson (1-0). L — Logan Peterson (1-1). 2B — Evan Heal (M), Christian Graf (P), Eli Watson (P), Ashton Holcomb (M). 3B — Kaden Williams (P).
Records: Providence 2-0, Morton 4-2.
Multiple hit players: Morton — Nick Guerra 2-3, RBI; Isaac Weber 2-3; Providence — Eli Watson 2-3, 2 RBIs.
Wilkinson pitching line: 5 IP, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 H, 8 K, 2 BB.
Peterson pitching line: 4 IP, 4 R, 2 ER, 2 H, 6 K, 2 BB.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

BASEBALL: Pioneers rally to win long-awaited season opener, 7-5

Special to Southern Indiana Preps
CLARKSVILLE — Providence finally played its first game of the season on Thursday. Games scheduled as early as March 27 were rained out, and the Pioneers were ready to get the season under way.
Providence staged a come-from-behind 7-5 win, scoring six runs in its last three at-bats against visiting Marmion Academy from Aurora, Ill. Class 3A No. 10 Providence is playing as host for three games in the Super Prep Tournament.
Providence coach Scott Hornung and his squad were elated to be in action. The team’s play indicated it was the season opener, and the Pioneers were definitely not in mid-season form.
“Our pregame talk was about (enjoying) being out on the field,” Hornung said. “It looked like a first game with first-game mistakes. It makes it better, though, to come out with a win.”
Marmion starting pitcher Eric Lundell stymied the Pioneers for the first three innings, holding them hitless. Providence did score a run in the first inning, however, thanks to a Marmion error.
“Coming out in the first game and facing a guy who throws 80 percent curve balls is pretty tough because we haven’t even seen a curve ball this year,” said Hornung. “Once he (Lundell) got command of that pitch, obviously we struggled.”
Marmion (4-8) scored twice in the opening inning off of Providence starter Christian Graf. Nick Telarico doubled home Brandon McPherson and Chase Stanke with two outs. McPherson and Stanke had reached base via being hit by a pitch and walking, respectively.
The Cadets put two more runs on the board in the fourth inning to take a 4-1 lead. Jake Carlson drove in the first on a sacrifice fly. This was followed by an RBI double by McPherson.
The Pioneers got rolling in the bottom of the fourth, scoring two runs after two were out. Zach Tackett and Graf each scored on a single by Preston Taylor to cut Providence’s deficit to 4-3. The base hit plated Tackett, and a throwing error on the play allowed Graf to score.
Providence rallied again in the fifth inning, again after two were out. This time the Pioneers scored three runs to take a 6-4 lead. An RBI single by Eli Watson drove one home, and then later Kaden Williams drove home two more with a single.
“We put together a two-out rally and put together some pressure and came through at the end,” said Hornung.
Timmy Borden led off the sixth inning with a solo home run to complete the scoring for Providence, giving it a 7-4 advantage.
Marmion loaded the bases and scored one run on a walk in the seventh inning to get to the final score.
Graf (1-0) threw six innings, giving up four runs on five hits, walking six and striking out six. Tackett relieved Graf in the seventh, but Borden came in to record the final out and get the save.
Lundell (1-3) absorbed the loss for Marmion, going 4 1/3 innings. He gave up five runs (only one earned) on four hits, walking three and striking out seven.
Providence will play at 5:30 p.m. Friday against Morton in the next day of the tournament.

Marmion            200 200 1—5 7 3
Providence         100 231 x—7 8 2
W — Christian Graf (1-0). L — Eric Lundell (1-3). S — Timmy Borden (1). 2B — Nick Telarico (M), Lucas Sagstetter (M), Brandon McPherson (M), Nathan Proctor (P). HR — Timmy Borden (P).
Records: Providence 1-0, Marmion 4-8.
Multiple hit players: Providence — Zach Tackett 2-3, 2 R.
Graf pitching line: 6 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 5 H, 6 K, 6 BB.
Lundell pitching line: 4.2 IP, 5 R, 1 ER, 4 H, 7 K, 3 BB.