BLOG — The timely hits that eluded Oxford’s baseball team in Game 1 of its best-of-three series against Lewisburg were collected early Friday night at Edwin Moak Field.
A baker’s dozen first inning set the tone for the Chargers in their 15-1 five-inning win against the Patriots in Game 2 in the first round of the MHSAA Class 5A playoffs. The deciding Game 3 is set for 7 p.m. on Saturday (May 3) at Lewisburg.
The Chargers tallied 13 runs on 10 hits, including a two-run homer from Jason Barber to cap off the first-frame scoring.
The offensive output came a night after the Patriots defeated the Chargers 4-1 and saw OHS (23-8 overall) squander several chances to put more runs on the board.
“We talked when we got home last night,” OHS coach Chris Baughman said. “We knew the mistakes we made. We knew we left too many guys on. We knew that. We had our opportunities, and I think that’s what we fed off of: ‘Guys we had a chance.’ They’re a real good baseball team, but we had our chance, and we can play with these guys. I think we took that mentality way more so than, ‘Man, we’re down 1-0.’ We just came out and swung it and swung it and swung it. And swung it well.”
Jack McClure, who finished 3-for-3 with a double and five RBIs, had an RBI single and two-run single in the opening frame to go along with an RBI single from Pittman Phillips and a two-run double by Hunter Roth.
Putting up so many runs in one inning, even during the regular season, much less the first round of the playoffs against a quality team like Lewisburg, is new to Baughman, but he knew his team was capable of such.
“I’ve rarely been a part of us putting up 13 against anybody, whether it’s non-division or whatever,” Baughman said. “After we put up nine or 10, I looked at my dad and said, ‘Wow.’ It was impressive.
“We played like that at the beginning of the year. People don’t remember it, but we played like that early, and this team has the ability to play like that. It’s just a matter of getting up there and doing it.”
Houston Roth earned the win on the mound for OHS. The sophomore right-hander gave up one run on three hits in three innings of work.
For more on the contest, and the decisive Game 3, check out Monday’s Sports section of the EAGLE. (May 2, 2014)