Baseball gets blowout win over Villa Madonna

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By Kristin Beck

The Panthers scored nine runs in the second inning to put the game out of reach early, rolling to a 12-1 win over Villa Madonna Monday, April 22.

Sophomore Austin Dunn had a fantastic night at the plate, going 3-3 with a triple and two doubles, good for six RBIs.

“He hit the ball hard last night and did a good job,” head coach Jimmy Ray said.

The Blue Lightning threatened early in the top of the first, putting runners on second and third off a single and a double with two outs. But pitcher Derrick Nickell forced a groundout to third baseman John Michael Adams to end the inning with nothing hurt.

In the bottom half, Justin Ray hit a grounder to shortstop and managed to beat the late throw. Adams followed with a single past the second baseman. Trey Boles hit a grounder to second base for a fielder’s choice out, and Ray was pegged sprinting for home plate to end the inning.

Nickell and the Panther defense held Villa Madonna to just one base runner in the top of the second to bring their bats back around.

Villa Madonna starting pitcher Glenn Rice threw eight straight balls, walking Dunn and Nickell. Chase Osborne singled to shortstop to load the bases. Keifer McIntyre hit a grounder to second for a fielder’s choice out, but it was enough to score Dunn, 1-0.

Brandon Stewart hit a two-RBI single down the first base line, 3-0. Dillon Craig hit a foul ball off his shin and then was hit on the next pitch to take his base. However, the welt on his shin forced him out of the game, and Taylor Hill subbed in.

Ray earned a walk, loading the bases for Adams. Adams hit a grounder to third base that took a high hop on the third baseman, scoring Stewart.

Following a strikeout, Dunn hit a three-RBI triple to center field, putting Carroll ahead 7-0. Nickell drew another walk, and that was the end of the night for the Villa Madonna starter.

Dan Hillenmeyer came on in relief. Things didn’t start well for him, as pinch runner Boo Donahue scored on a passed ball. Osborne walked and McIntyre and Stewart were each with a pitch to score another run, 9-0.

Villa Madonna got on the scoreboard in the top of the third, but the Panthers also scored in the inning. Ray led off with a walk, and Adams singled to left field. After Boles hit into a fielder’s choice at shortstop, Dunn hit a double to centerfield to score Ray and Boles, 11-1.

The last run game in the bottom of the fifth. With two outs, Boles drew a walk and Dunn brought him home with a line drive double to right field.

Coach Ray said Nickell did a good job of throwing strikes and the defense played well. Play good defense and a lot of times you’ll win, he said.