Bobcat baseball sweeps Tonganoxie
Poor field conditions did not stop the fury of pitching by Basehor-Linwood on Thursday.
The Bobcats, behind a pair of young arms, won 11-0 and 4-1 over Tonganoxie to stay undefeated on the 2001 season.
Basehor-Linwood will receive another tough test on Thursday when the Bobcats travel to Piper for a league doubleheader.
Basehor-Linwood 11, Tonganoxie 0
Hammering out hit after hit allowed the Bobcats to walk away with an opening drubbing over the Chieftains.
"We didn't sit back and try to get walks," said Suther. "We came out there to hit the ball. We hit a lot of line drives and some of those found the gap, which really paid off for us."
BLHS had at least one hit in each inning, the final coming in the sixth inning on Chris Maleta's walk-off grand slam home run.
"We were really mentally prepared before we came out here," Maleta said of the aggressive Bobcat attack. "Right now, we just want to win every game."
Maleta went 4-for-4 with five RBI in the victory.
The Bobcats stayed with the offensive punch, despite working on a wet infield. Surprisingly enough, both teams had no problems defensively.
"(The infield) started off very rough, but it did dry out after we started playing on it," Suther said. "What changed the game was not being able to steal on either side.
"There were great catchers on both sides, so I give them both credit, but it was hard to get a grip to get any kind of steal," he added.
The Bobcats were able to find the gaps in the fourth inning on RBI doubles by Ryan Marx and Ross McCoy. BLHS pounded out four doubles, all in the fourth, with the addition of Maleta and Darren Marx.
Hampton and McCoy reached base on errors, then Horn was hit by a pitch to
load the bases. Maleta worked the count to 3-0 and received the go-ahead to swing away.
"The coach just gives me the green light, so I just took all my power to it," said Maleta, who planted his fourth home run on the season over the left field fence to end the game.
Marx, who has not allowed a run in his first two starts, moved to 2-0 on the season.
Basehor-Linwood 4, Tonganoxie 1
The Bobcats received a strong six-inning performance from Derrick Bryan, then survived a bases-loaded jam in the seventh to complete the sweep.
Senior first baseman Brandon Lasley led off the second inning with a solo home run, giving BLHS a 1-0 lead. The Bobcats took a two-run advantage in the next inning when Mike Horn, who went 3-for-3, scored off Bryan's flyout.
In the fourth, Travis Fouts and Darren Marx led off with back-to-back singles, then moved up 90 feet each on a double-steal. Jeremy Hampton scored Fouts on a sacrifice, then Horn drove in Marx on an RBI single.
Horn made a sensational diving grab for the final out in the sixth inning, recovering from a slip on the wet outfield grass.
"The whole game I was battling the outfield," Horn said. "Every first step I took, I felt like I was about to fall."
Horn then took the mound immediately after the catch and worked himself into a jam by walking the first two batters. After a sacrifice and a called third-strike for the first out, Horn walked another batter, loading the bases.
"I was a little nervous," said Horn. "I've done it before, but I was just nervous with college coaches looking at me. I was a little wild."
The senior settled down and was able to get a groundout for the final out of the game.
"He starts pumping strikes with the amount of speed that he has throwing and gets his confidence up, he'll be fine," Suther said of Horn.
Bryan allowed five hits and one earned run through six innings. The sophomore also struck out two batters in the win.
Thursday's game at Tonganoxie was originally slated to be played at Basehor, but poor field conditions forced the game to be moved. Both the baseball and softball teams bused together to Tonganoxie for the games.
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Staying in their power hitting mode, the Bobcats have hit seven home runs in their first four games. Three more will match the 2000 season mark of 10.