By PAUL HINES firstname.lastname@example.org
---- — MT. VERNON — The Rams baseball team used late offense to beat West Frankfort 11-1 Wednesday.
“We had good at-bats one through nine again, had some big hits,” Mt. Vernon coach Tim Holloway said. “Clayton came through with a big hit to finish the game there.”
Colten Meador and Clayton Reeves combined to power an offense that saw eight players get hits. Mt. Vernon also stole seven bases.
“(We) hit the ball hard so that’s when things get going well for you,” Holloway said. “That’s nice to have plus we were able to be aggressive on the bases.”
Meador led the attack with three hits and three RBI. Reeves added a pair of hits and two RBI Landon Thomas and Sawyer Harrison both finished with two hits each.
The non-conference game against the Redbirds was sandwiched between a pair of South Seven matchups. Tuesday, the Rams traveled to Marion for a shutout win. Today, Mt. Vernon is back on the road. This time they face Carbondale.
“I think they learned from last week,” Holloway said. “After we beat Althoff we were a little flat against DuQuoin, and we talked about that before the game. You can’t have that. You have to play hard every day.
Mt. Vernon jumped out to a 3-1 edge, but the Rams offense exploded in the final two innings. The Rams combined for eight runs on as many hits during the stretch.
Jake Pike put the Rams up 5-1 with an RBI double. Later in the inning Sawyer Harrison added an RBI single. He finished the scoring in the fifth when he raced in to score on a wild pitch to make the score 8-1.
The Rams added three more runs in the sixth. Reeves ended the game with a run-scoring single he launched over the left fielder’s head.
Trevor Flota and Tyler Morgan split the game on the mound for the Rams. Both hurlers threw three innings each. Flota started the game and was declared the winning pitcher. The senior finished with two strikeouts. He didn’t allow a run on three hits. Morgan had two strikeouts.
“We pitched very well,” Holloway said. “We had one hit batter, and that was it, no walks, no errors. So another very solid game today.”
West Frankfort scratched across its only run of the game in the fourth against Morgan. The Rams pitcher hit the leadoff batter Hunter Hancock. He later scored on a fielder’s choice.
Mt. Vernon is 10-4 overall and 2-0 in conference play.
“I think we’re off to a solid start,” Holloway said. “There’s four of them that I would like to have back, but I think we learned a lesson last week.”