ELIDA — When the hits start coming, things tend to fall into place a lot easier.
In the last several baseball games, the Elida bats have started to come alive.
Elida showed patience at the plate in Tuesday’s 7-5 Western Buckeye League win over crosstown-rival Bath at Ed Sandy Field.
Elida had seven base hits to go along with a total of eight walks dished out by Bath pitching.
Elida’s resurgence at the plate has now resulted in four consecutive wins.
Elida improves to 8-3 overall and 1-2 in the WBL. Bath slips to 5-3 and 2-1.
“We’ve run off four (wins) in a row now,” Elida head coach Todd Grapner said. “Finally, the bats came to life. We really struggled the first week, week and a half. Starting on Friday, we really started to swing the bats better. We had a really good weekend, a good performance last night and then also tonight. We scored seven (runs) tonight. In a WBL game, seven is a lot of runs.”
Senior Noah Adcock was one of those Elida players who contributed at the plate against Bath. Adcock was 2 for 4 with a double.
Adcock also came in from his shortstop position to take over pitching duties for starter Luke Burger in the top of the third.
Adcock worked the next five innings to close out the game for the Bulldogs. He gave up one run on two hits, while striking out six, walking three and hitting two batters. Adcock threw 71 pitches.
In his two innings of work, Burger was tabbed for four runs on four hits, while striking out two and walking two. He threw 49 pitches.
“Noah (Adcock) is probably our No. 3 (pitcher),” Grapner said. “We haven’t used him as a starter yet, because he does such a great job in relief. I think this is the sixth time he has come in on relief for us this year in 11 games. He’s a guy that we know will come in and throw strikes, has a good curveball and has good velocity. So, we know he’s going to be tough, regardless who he comes in to replace. He just pounds the strike zone and gives us a very good chance to win. Luke (Burger) was struggling to hit the strike zone. We made the decision to use him (Adcock) earlier than we wanted to.”
Burger had a good night with the bat, however, going 2 for 2, including an RBI triple in Elida’s four-run first inning.
Elida tallied four runs on just two hits in the home half of the first, as Bath starting pitcher Logan Davis struggled with his control. Davis lasted just one inning, before giving way to Austin Sakemiller.
Davis was tabbed for the four runs, while striking out one and walking six. He tossed 48 pitches in his lone inning of work.
“Early on, we weren’t throwing strikes,” first-year Bath head coach Joe Gomez said. “We had a couple guys who were struggling to be around the plate. I think we tallied up like six walks and maybe a hit batsman or two; and I think three or four of those guys scored. At the end of the day, you have to throw strikes. You have to throw strikes and let your defense work. We put ourselves behind the eight-ball early; and that makes it difficult to claw your way back and stay (in the lead).”
Sakemiller worked one inning, before being lifted for Lex Boedicker, who came over from his first base position.
“We had a good first inning,” Grapner said. “We had some really good at bats. We made Davis work. I thought that was the key to the game – getting him (Davis) out early. He’s been good for them, but we saw a lot of pitches. We fouled a lot of pitches off; and I thought that was the key for us tonight.”
After Elida took the 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first, Bath battled back and scored four runs of its own in the top of the second. Gage Iiames (1 for 3), Boedicker and Caleb Buerger (1 for 4) each had RBI singles for Bath in the second inning.
The Bulldogs added two runs in their half of the second to take a 6-4 lead. Brayden Lybarger hit a sacrifice fly to right field that scored a run for Elida. The other run was the result of a passed ball.
Bath added a run in the fourth on an RBI single by Cole Parlapiano to cut the Elida lead to 6-5.
However, Elida added an insurance run in the sixth on a sacrifice fly by Jordan Davis, that drove in Adcock.
“We’ve been seeing more pitches and having more quality at bats. We’re not swinging at the first pitch out of the strike zone,” Grapner said. “If we keep doing that, then things will turn for us.”
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