On Monday, May 3, Vandalia would take advantage of 10 Litchfield defensive miscues and walk away with a 11-3 victory in Litchfield.
The Vandals would jump out in front of the Purple Panthers early in the contest as they would put a run on the board in the top half of the first inning. Vandalia would add seven more runs in the next three innings as they would hold a commanding 8-0 lead.
The Panthers would not be able to collect a run until the bottom of the fifth inning, but would get runners on the base paths in three of the first four innings.
In the bottom of the first inning the Panthers would get a runner in scoring position. Jacob Frerichs put himself on second base, with two outs, when he connected on a shot to center field. During the next at-bat Frerichs would get a step closer to scoring when he moved to third base on a wild pitch.
After Carson Saathoff took a ball four, both Saathoff and Frerichs would remain on the base paths as the Vandals closed out the first inning.
In the third inning Blaine Stewart would be the third Purple Panther to reach the base paths when he accepted a seven-pitch walk. Stewart would not remain for long as the Vandals would put together a tailor-made double play, putting an end to the Panthers’ half of the third inning.
Trailing 8-0 after three and a half innings, the Panthers were desperate to rattle the bats in the bottom half of the fourth. Jacob Frerichs and Carson Saathoff would both collect a base hit to start off the Panthers’ half of the inning. Two strikeouts and a fielder’s choice later, Litchfield would still remain scoreless after four innings of action.
After threatening to put runs on the board, the Panthers would finally crack into the scoring column in the fifth inning.
Bryce Hires would lead off the inning with a single and would be joined on the base paths by the next two batters as Drake Gasperson would reach first on an error and Blaine Stewart would follow with a base on balls.
With the bases full of Panthers, Jacob Budd would come through as he sacrificed in Bryce Hires, giving Litchfield their first run of the game.
Jacob Frerichs would once again load the bases with Panthers when he took the second walk of the inning for Litchfield. The Vandals would quickly end the Panthers’ scoring threat as they would retire the next two batters. The lone run would narrow the Vandalia lead to 8-1 after five innings of action.
The seventh inning would add more runs to the board for both teams as the Vandals increased their lead to 11-1, before the Panthers put more runs on their side of the scorecard.
In the bottom half of the seventh inning, Jacob Budd would bring some spark to the Panthers offense.
After one out was recorded, Blaine Stewart would reach first base on a single. Following Stewart’s single, Budd would bring some excitement as he would connect on a bomb to left field, collecting his first home run of the season. Budd’s hit would also score Stewart, making the score 11-3.
Budd’s home run would be the last excitement of the contest for the Panthers as the Vandals shut down the next two batters to close out the contest.
On the defensive side of the diamond the Panthers would not be able to help their pitching staff, as they would commit 10 errors in the contest. Litchfield’s starting pitcher Bryce Hires would earn the loss in the contest as he pitched 3 2/3 innings allowing seven runs off of seven hits, but only five runs would be earned.
Litchfield’s game against Lincoln was rained out on May 4. Their next contest is scheduled for Thursday, May 6, at Greenville.
May 3 at Litchfield
Vandalia 102 500 3 11 9 1
Litchfield 000 010 2 3 6 10
Litchfield IP R ER H K BB
B. Hires 3.2 7 5 7 3 1
J. Stewart 3.0 4 3 2 2 4
Gasperson 0.1 0 0 0 1 2
Litchfield Batting Statistics
Hits: Jacob Frerichs 2-3, Blaine Stewart 1-2, Jacob Budd 1-3, Carson Saathoff 1-3, Bryce Hires 1-3. 2B: Jacob Frerichs 1. HR: Jacob Budd 1. Runs: Blaine Stewart 1, Jacob Budd 1, Bryce Hires 1. RBI: Jacob Budd 3.
Records: Vandalia (2-4), Litchfield (0-2).