PARK HILLS — The Mineral Area Cardinals energized their bats to hit five home runs and five doubles in defeating the St. Charles Cougars 13-2 and 14-2 in a doubleheader at Hal Loughary Field on Thursday with both games only going five innings each.
Five different players contributed to the home run count, and all nine starters had at least one hit in game one with eight of nine doing the same in game two. Defensively, the Cardinals were on top of their game as they turned a double play in each game and their only error came on a pick-off attempt at first in the second game.
Jeff King took the mound for game one, and after only giving up a lone double in the top of the first, he was treated to a seven-run lead before he took the mound for inning two. King only gave up five hits and two walks, while striking out four in the shortened game.
The Cardinals put together a streak of six straight hits after a lead-off ground out. Catcher Cody Garlington hit a three-run home run and Clayton Gibbons hit a double during the streak. Garlington finished 3-3 in the game to go 5-6 on the day. Dylan McEwin hit a two-out, three-run home run to cap off the first-inning deluge.
The Cougars scored their two runs on a sacrifice fly by Brandon Huske in the third and on a bases-loaded double play in the fourth.
Lead-off hitter Lance Fields hit a ball over the leftfield fence for two more Cardinal runs in the third inning, but it would be a two-run blast by Brad Ridings in the fifth which would seal the deal for the Cardinals.
In game two, the Cougars were able to get runners in scoring position each inning, but Mineral Area pitcher Wayde Roth was stingy about allowing them to cross home plate. Roth ended two innings with a strike-out, one with a double play grounder, and one with a fly-out for four innings of shut-out ball.
The Cougars were finally able to score in their last at-bats with John Sesti hitting a two-RBI single. Roth spread out seven Cougar hits over the game’s five innings and he stranded seven runners.
Mineral Area scored six runs in the second inning and another six in the fourth. A two-RBI double by Tanner Glore as followed by a two-run home run by Dylan Mays to highlight the second inning. Three straight singles by Brad Wright, Danny Define and Ethan Bullard loaded the bases for pinch-hitters Dominique Smith and Austin Harris who were both hit by a pitch to drive in a run.
Ridings doubled his RBI total for the day with a two-run double in the fourth to finish 5-8, and he scored on the Cougars only error. Matt Hahn was the third Cardinals pinch-hitter to be hit by a pitch in the inning by reliever Brian Bumpus as Mineral Area Coach Stan Walden emptied his bench to finish out the runaway game.
With the two wins MAC improved its record to 24-20 on the year, and they will play at North Central on Sunday for their next outing.
St. Charles 001 10 - 2 5 0
Mineral Area 702 04 - 13 13 0
WP- Jeff King 5i 2r 5h 4k 2bb, LP- Danny Droege 4 2/3i 13r 13h 4k 2bb 1hb.
St. Charles - Brandon Huske 1-2, Dane Moore 1-2, Patrick Shumway 1-2, Brady Smith 1-2, Keaton Baker 1-3. 2b- Huske.
Mineral Area - Cody Garlington 3-3, Lance Fields 2-3, Brad Ridings 2-4, Brad Wright 1-2, Tyler Bunge 1-2, Dylan McEwin 1-2, Tanner Glore 1-3, Dylan Mays 1-3, Clayton Gibbons 1-3. HR- Ridings, Fields, McEwin, Garlington. 2b- Fields, Gibbons.
St. Charles 000 02 - 2 7 2
Mineral Area 260 6x - 14 15 1
WP- Wayde Roth 5i 2r 7h 3k 3bb, LP- Robert Wright 3i 8r11h2k 3bb.
St. Charles - Jimmy Obermark 2-2, John Willie 2-2, Tyler Miller 1-2, Brandon Huske 1-3, John Sesti 1-3. 2b- Willie.
Mineral Area - Tanner Glore 3-3, Brad Ridings 3-4, Dylan Mays 2-3, Cody Garlington 2-3, Lance Fields 1-1, Brad Wright 1-2, Ethan Bullard 1-2, Clayton Gibbons 1-2, Danny Define 1-2,