SLATER - A change of pace on the mound and four strong innings on offense lifted Ballard past Collins-Maxwell-Baxter, 10-0, in five innings June 22 at Nite Hawk Field in Slater.
Clayton Poots picked up the first varsity win of his career for Ballard and the Bombers scored at least two runs in all four innings they went to the plate.
Using mainly offspeed stuff, Poots threw the CMB hitters off balance most of the night. He gave up four hits and struck out three with only one walk.
“I’m pretty excited,” Poots said. “I had a good defense to help me out — special shout-out Jack Luster making plays over there at third for me. We just kept it in the infield as best as possible.”
CMB’s best opportunity to score came in the first inning. The Raiders put two runners on, but were unable to get anyone across.
“Their pitcher mixed it up enough that we couldn’t really find a good rhythm and hit it hard,” CMB head coach Max Seeman said. “They took advantage of it.”
Tucker Maxwell singled and walked and Creighton Caple, Cole Damman and Travis Lindemoen each finished with one hit for CMB.
“We’re getting guys on and getting them in scoring position,” Seeman said. “I think we’ve just got to have a little more confidence in ourselves at the plate. We haven’t scored a lot of runs all year and these guys don’t trust themselves at the plate all the time. What I tell them is just be a hitter — be an athlete. Trust yourself and don’t overthink it, because if you start thinking too much you’ve already lost the battle.”
Ballard finished with nine hits. The Bombers scored three times in the first and fourth innings and two runs apiece in the second and third frames.
Isaac Schafbuch went a perfect 2-for-2 with two runs and three RBI for Ballard in the win.
“I’ve been struggling lately and just working on my approach in the cage,” Schafbuch said. “All the coaches have been really helpful. It felt really good to get back on track tonight.”
Schafbuch smacked a solo home run over the fence in center field to lead off the Bomber half of the third inning.
“The pitcher just left it a little bit high and I was just swinging easy,” Schafbuch said. “I wanted to take it up the middle and it went out. That was good.”
Luster finished 2-for-3 with a double, two runs and two RBI. Codey Erickson doubled, scored and drove in a run; Tanner Brock was 1-for-3 with one run and RBI apiece; Gannon Manfull singled and scored; Austin Edwards went 1-for-1 with two walks, one run and an RBI and Reece Huen singled, walked and drove in a run.
Maxwell was the losing pitcher. He gave up three earned runs on two hits and two walks in one inning.
Damman allowed seven runs — four earned — on seven hits with one strikeout and walk apiece in three innings for CMB.
Ballard 10, CMB 0 (5)
CMB 000 00 - 0 4 2
B 322 3X - 10 9 1
CMB: Tucker Maxwell, Cole Damman (2) and Travis Lindemoen.
B: Clayton Poots and Kade Reinertson.
2B: B - Jack Luster, Codey Erickson.
HR: B - Isaac Schafbuch.