by Anthony Sizemore, Student Sportswriter
The Alice Lloyd Eagles baseball team traveled north of the border to New Albany, Indiana to take on the Grenadiers of IU Southeast. Here is a game-by-game recap of the four-game series that took place this past Friday and Saturday.
In the series opener, ALC sent Wayne Sparks to the hill while IU Southeast opposed with Elliot Fuller. There was no score through two innings of play, but that changed in the bottom of the third. The Grenadiers were able to bring home three runs to take the lead, and they added two more in the fourth.
Fuller is one of the top pitchers in the conference statistically and it showed. Although the Eagles drew four walks, they only managed to get two hits off of Fuller. ALC’s Sparks went full distance, allowing the 5 runs but only 1 of those runs was earned. He also gave up 8 hits while striking out 5 batters.
Chance Westerfield started the second game for the Eagles, and Clay Hardesty was on the mound for the Grenadiers. IU Southeast got things rolling early to take a 2-0 lead through one inning of action. Alice Lloyd fought back to tie the game by scoring one run apiece in the second and third innings only for IU Southeast to put up three in the bottom half of the third to take a 5-2 advantage. Both teams brought home one run in the fourth, but IU Southeast busted the game open in the sixth to score four more runs.
Trae Minton, Cody Hyden, Josh Mills, and Kevin Smith drove in the runs. Westerfield only went two and two-third innings, surrendering 5 runs on 8 hits. Ryan Burrow and Jordan Horn finished the game for the Eagles. They allowed 5 runs on 4 hits while recording 4 strikeouts.
Neil Dillon was given the ball for game three while IUS picked Lucas Harry as its starting pitcher. This would turn out to be a pitcher’s duel as the bats were relatively silent.
IU Southeast got their runs during the third and fourth innings, adding one run in each inning. Dillon kept the Eagles right in it, but the Eagles could not get a rally going. ALC collected six hits, but there was nothing to show for it.
Dillon gave the bullpen much-needed rest, going all six innings while allowing 2 runs on 2 hits. He also recorded 3 Ks.
To say that the series finale was a slugfest would be a major understatement. Dylan Sullins and Derek Gross were the starters for their respective teams, but this was not a good day to be a pitcher.
ALC came ready to hit and it showed in the very first inning going for four runs. IU Southeast answered by getting three of those runs back. The Eagles would duplicate their first inning feat in the second, scoring four more runs. After two innings, it was 8-3.
Then, the game got even crazier.
Alice Lloyd pounded home eight runs in the third. The Grenadiers responded with four runs in the home half of the third to make it 16-7. More pyrotechnics were displayed by ALC as they put a five spot on the board, scoring five more runs. Bobby Caldwell had the game of his life as he drove home eight runs. Not to be outdone, Cody Hyden had six RBIs next to his name. Josh Mills, Ben Ray, and Shane Pack had two RBIs apiece while Brandon Arnold had one.
ALC’s Sullins pitched six and two-thirds innings, surrendering 14 runs and 14 hits, but was still credited as the winning pitcher. Cody Hyden came on in relief and recorded the last out.
Next up, the Eagles will welcome Virginia Intermont to Alice Lloyd’s Reeve Athletic Field on Wednesday, April 10th. The doubleheader is set to begin at 1 PM.