BATH TOWNSHIP — There have been much warmer football playoff games.
But Lima Central Catholic’s hitters didn’t care that the game-time temperature was 35 degrees.
LCC banged out 20 hits in a football-like 24-10 win over Bath on the opening day for high school baseball Monday at Bath.
“I didn’t come over here today expecting to see a football score, but sometimes that’s what the game throws your way,” LCC coach John Schnieders said.
Bath helped out the T-Birds by committing nine errors and walking 14 batters. LCC only had one error.
“The key to the game was we didn’t give them extra outs and they gave us some extra outs,” Schnieders said.
LCC catcher Mike Snider went 4 of 6 with three RBIs. LCC shortstop Austin Stolly was also 4 for 6 with three RBIs.
“We had to be patient at the plate,” Snider said.
LCC ran out to a 6-0 lead in the first and led 11-4 after three. Bath got within 18-10 after six before the T-Birds added six more runs in the seventh.
“We got two scrimmages in and that always helps, against two good squads in Napoleon and Russia,” Snider said. “We felt like we could hit the ball today and even though it was cold, we got the bat on the ball.”
Consider these offensive numbers on a bone-chilling day: LCC scored runs in all seven innings. It scored four in the third, five in the sixth and six in the first and seventh.
“The sign of a mature team is the one when you score a bunch early, you keep going and don’t sit on that early lead,” Schnieders said. “We kept the pressure on them.”
LCC had seven players with at least two hits and three with three or more.
Besides Snider and Stolly for LCC, Kyle O’Dowd went 3 for 5. Trevor Kottenbrock was 2 for 6 with three RBIs; Cody McCullough went 2 for 3; Dylan Fisher was 2 for 4 with four RBIs; and Sam Huffman was 2 for 4 with two RBIs.
Bath’s Matt Wise was 3 for 4 with two RBIs. Kyle Zimmerman went 3 for 5 with two doubles and two RBIs. Myles Holliday went 2 for 4 with two RBIs.
The right-handed Kottenbrock started and got the win. He went four innings and gave up four runs, all earned, on eight hits. He struck out one and walked one.
Snider, from his view behind the plate, thought the conditions were tough for all the fielders.
“It’s difficult for everybody, infielders and outfielders,” Snider said. “It’s tough to get a grip on the ball.”
Bath coach Brian Jesko refused to use the cold as an excuse.
“They were battling the same elements and their guys didn’t seem to have a problem throwing strikes,” Jesko said. “It was a chilly day, but it was a equal playing field for both sides. The bottom line is we didn’t get the job done.”
The T-Birds batted around in the first, third, sixth and seventh innings.
“Today we had three three-year lettermen in the lineup,” Schnieders said. We’re a veteran ballclub and you expect to be better, offensively, the next year. ... If we’re going to win like we want to win this year, I think offense will be key for us.”
LCC bats batter Bath