Hughesville Post 238 was locked in a tight battle with Calvert in American Legion baseball action the first of two games scheduled to be completed on Tuesday evening at Hallowing Point Park in Prince Frederick.
“The first game was a makeup and we started in the top of the fourth inning up 7-6,” Hughesville head coach Chris Gase said. “We gave up the lead pretty quickly, and [Calvert] was up 8-7 [in the top of the seventh inning].”
After earning a walk-off win over Calvert on Sunday, Hughesville found itself in a similar position when Aaron Hampton doubled to score the game-tying run and force extra innings.
“We were able to rally in that seventh inning,” Gase said. “We did a good job of holding [Calvert] as our pitchers, Eric Hampton and Robert Polk, were able to get out of some of those innings where they had runners on base. Then finally in the top of the ninth we were able to get a couple of runs across and win it there.”
Hughesville topped Calvert 10-8 in nine innings in the completed game that had to be suspended for weather on June 20. Hughesville was able to carry the momentum from the comeback victory over into the teams’ next contest Tuesday evening, a 17-5 win in six innings.
“In the second game, we came out and kind of put them down early,” Gase said. “I think they were still a little demoralized with how the first game ended and we came out in the first inning and punched them right in the mouth by scoring four runs in the first inning and five runs in the second inning.”
Calvert trailed 10-0 in the bottom of the third inning before Easton Schaible was able to single on a fly ball to right field which scored Jake Richardson for the team’s first run of the contest.
Brandon Milam scored Schaible on a sacrifice fly and Jaron Lillard scored on a wild pitch as Calvert recorded three runs in the inning.
Hughesville responded by scoring three runs in the top of the fourth to maintain its advantage.
“We kind of had them on their heels the whole game,” Gase said. “Our pitchers did a good job of throwing strikes. Our hitters did a good job of battling and being able to score runs.”
Derrell Butler struck out five batters in four innings of work, while Polk only surrendered one hit in two innings for Hughesville.
At the plate, John Lusk led Hughesville with four hits and five RBIs, while Tommy Brill and Thaj Burrell each registered two hits.
“Overall, it was a really good way to end the day with two wins,” Gase said. “We are definitely a team you don’t really want to face in the Southern Maryland Legion Tournament right now.”
In the loss, Calvert registered six hits, five errors and utilized five different pitchers.
“In the first game, we fought hard, hit the ball and pitched very well, but just a couple of mental errors cost us that game,” Calvert head coach Jim Schaible said. “All in all though, the kids played pretty well.”
Jim Schaible noted how his team has struggled to play well in the second game of a doubleheader this season.
“In the second game, we just weren’t here,” he said. “We weren’t in the game until the end and then the boys started to play ball, hit and do the right thing. But, you have to be in the game from the first through the seventh inning.”