Mt. Vernon Register-News

April 22, 2014

Rams outlast Orphans

Score 6 late runs, win in extras

By Paul Hines


The offensive floodgates finally opened in the ninth inning for Mt. Vernon's baseball team.

The Rams piled up six runs in the ninth inning to claim a 7-3 extra-inning victory Tuesday.

I am proud of our guys for competing hard and playing with a lot of focus,” Mt. Vernon coach Tim Holloway said. “Today, we kept ourselves in the game with pitching and defense before our offense was finally able to break through.”

The late runs dealt the decisive blow in the game, but a perfectly executed pickoff play by the Rams gave the Orphans a critical blow.

Fortunately it worked out for us, and we were able to get the job done with that and as happens a lot of times in this game we had some momentum,” Holloway said.

With the game tied at one in the bottom of the eighth, Centralia moved a runner to second base with one out. That's when Mt. Vernon executed a hidden ball pickoff move with Brock Fulkerson on the mound. Fulkerson whirled for a pickoff at second while the Rams fielders acted like the ball was thrown wildly into center field. The Centralia runner broke for third and was tagged out after a brief rundown.

We had an unfortunate baserunning mistake in the (ninth), and then we just didn't compete after that,” Centralia coach Matt Kottmeyer said.

Mt. Vernon took the momentum of the strong defensive play into the top of the ninth. After struggling as a team throughout the game with runners in scoring position, Thomas Weber helped the Rams break out. The senior knocked an RBI single to give the Rams a 2-1 edge.

Huge hit by Thomas there in the ninth,” Holloway said. “He's done well for us.

He's a senior, and he is a guy we can count on.”

After the hit, the Rams runs poured in. Jake Pike tripled in a run to make the margin 3-1. Zach Brookman made the score 6-1 with a two-run triple to the left-center field wall later in the inning. Centralia aided Mt. Vernon with multiple errors in the inning.

It's a shame because we competed hard for most of the game, and then that's not how you win,” Kottmeyer said.

Brock Fulkerson pitched all nine innings for the Rams and walked one batter while striking out four. Despite the big deficit going into the bottom of the ninth, Centralia was able to get the tying run to the plate against Fulkerson. The senior was able to get Ryan Obermeier to pop out to center field to end the game.

Mt. Vernon is 11-9-1 this season and 3-2 in South Seven Conference play.