CONVOY – This wasn’t where Lincolnview expected to be – trailing 2-0, having only one hit, an infield single, and with more errors (three) than hits three innings into its rivalry game against Crestview in high school baseball on Monday.
But when you battled all the way to the Division IV state championship game last season and have rebounded to win 13 of your last 14 games after an 0-3 start this season, you have deep wells of resiliency to draw from.
“We made a couple errors and spotted them two runs in the first two innings. This group is really resilient. They’ve been through a lot. They have a never give up attitude,” Lincolnview coach Eric Fishpaw said.
After spotting Crestview its early lead, the Lancers scored once in the top of the fourth inning, took a 3-2 lead with a pair of runs in the fifth inning, then closed it out with five runs in the sixth inning for an 8-2 win.
With Landon Price on the mound, eight runs were much more than needed. The senior left-hander, who is headed to Ohio State next year, struck out 17 and allowed two hits in the game. Crestview had only two baserunners – both on walks – in the last five innings.
“My secondary offerings, such as my change up and curve ball kind of just came to me later. And my body felt a lot better as we continued to go. I felt a little stiff early but as I got into a groove I started to feel really good,” Price said.
He also thought the experience acquired in last year’s tournament run played a role in Lincolnview’s win.
“When we got down 2-0 I think all those older guys who were part of our team last year, we kind of realized we’d been there before,” he said.
Crestview (10-5 overall, 5-2 Northwest Conference) took a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Ayden Lichtensteiger reached base on an error moved up on another throwing error and scored on a third scoring error.
The Knights raised their lead to 2-0 in the second inning when Parker Speith singled and Lichtensteiger doubled to score him.
Crestview pitcher Carson Hunter did not allow a run until the fourth inning when Austin Bockrath walked and Price drove him in with a two-out single to cut the lead to 2-1.
Lincolnview (13-4, 7-0 NWC) took the lead at 3-2 in the fifth inning. It started when Dane Ebel walked, Carson Fox singled and they ended up at second and third bases because of an outfield error. A ground out by Jack Dunlap scored Ebel to tie the game and a wild pitch scored Fox.
Fox had the big hit in Lincolnview’s five-run eruption in the sixth inning when he singled to score two runs and a third run scored on an overthrow at home plate.
“The energy in the dugout was a big component,” Fox said about Lincolnview’s comeback. “And once Landon got rolling, it was game over from there.”
Fox had two hits in two official at bats and reached base two other times after being hit by pitches. Price was 2 for 5.
Lincolnview’s win clinched an outright Northwest Conference championship. Achieving that goal in a rivalry game made it even sweeter for the Lancers.
“No better feeling. There’s no better feeling, honestly,” Price said. Fox said, “It doesn’t get much better than this.”