The Hilltoppers scored 10 runs in the sixth inning to take a 17-1 Big Seven Conference baseball win over the Pioneers on Wednesday evening at Sonny Miller Field. It came one night after the ’Toppers held a similar 7-1 lead only to see the Pioneers rally to lose by just two runs.
Landon Slemp led the way, going 4-for-4 with five RBIs and two runs scored. His totals included a three-run shot over left field in the final inning.
“The whole game I was waiting for him to get one in that I could get elevated,” Slemp said about the long home run. “I saw it out of his hand and I swung. It was right height, the right speed, right where I wanted it and I turned on it. It just seemed like tonight we had more energy and we were having fun. We kept that energy up and we kept putting runs on the board.”
Science Hill improved to 7-4 overall and 4-0 in league play. The ’Toppers have been on a recent hot streak with five wins over their last six games. They were hitting the ball with confidence, knocking around 17 hits.
At the bottom of the lineup, Austin Motte was 3-for-4 with a RBI and two runs scored, while Connor Hyatt and Hunter Phillips each went 2-for-4 with a RBI and a run scored. In addition, Matthew Levi scored four runs.
Quinn Boyle shut down the Pioneers on the mound, striking out eight and giving up just two hits before Dustin Eatmon threw the final inning.
“Quinn was on his game, locating all his pitches,” Science Hill coach Ryan Edwards said. “Obviously, we had a great night hitting. But, the key was not letting them come back, throwing good pitches. We kept getting them out and it was probably the best game Quinn has pitched to this point.”
Cade Larkins and Micah Robinson had Crockett’s only hits. Cody Wheeley had a RBI with a sacrifice fly to score Larkins. Starter Luke Adams suffered the loss before Austin Hensley and Tyler Hensley saw action as the Pioneers fell to 3-6, 1-3.
It was a tough chore with the way Science Hill’s entire lineup was productive at the plate. Jackson Hill went 2-for-4, while Cade McCoy, Caleb Marmo and Ben Edwards scored two runs apiece.
Not that he needed all the run support as Boyle had an air of confidence on the mound after getting a couple of good pieces of advice.
“My fellow pitcher taught me something with my hips and then, my dad told me to just have fun,” Boyle said. “That’s what I did. I just stayed focused, had my stuff and had confidence.”
Coach Edwards was obviously pleased with the latest performance, although it didn’t take long to mention his team has Big Seven games with another county rival, Daniel Boone, next Monday and Tuesday.
“We’re getting better, but it’s a long season and March will be over before we play again,” Edwards said. “I’ll take where we’re out at the end of March, but we have a long ways to go. We’ve made some mistakes and we have to work on some things before the next series with Boone, who is playing very good baseball. They have a veteran group and it’s a tall order.”