By BLAKE FAITH
The Mt. Zion baseball team battled back from a 5-0 deficit to beat Rochester 10-5 last Monday in a non-conference home matchup.
The Braves gave up five runs in the first two innings of the game. The Braves’ offense ignited in the second inning when Robert Chausse got on base with a single and advanced Drew Hittmeier to second base. Sam Driscoll drove in Hittmeier on an RBI single and then Chausse stole home to narrow the Rochester lead to 5-2.
Hittmeier threw a zero-run third and fourth inning. The Braves’ offense was shut down in the third, but was ignited again by Chausse. Chausse got on base with a walk and then Tony Alford hit a double to the centerfield wall to put him at second base and Chausse at third. Driscoll then drove in Chausse on a sacrifice fly to bring the Braves within a 5-3 deficit.
Jackson Beiler knocked in two runs on a double that tied the game at 5-5. Hittmeier threw a zero-run fifth inning. The Braves took the lead and never looked back in the bottom of the fifth inning when Evanm Hamrick hit an RBI double to the right-field gap to give the Braves a 6-5 lead.
“I thought we were a little flat to begin the game,” Head coach JD Arnold said. “I didn’t think we had the energy that we needed to start the game. But once we started putting barrels on a couple of baseballs, that energy kind of provided for itself. I knew we would get on the pitcher.
We swung the bats really well on Saturday. So I knew it’s just a matter of time. We just couldn’t get too far down early.”
The Braves added four insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Gavin McInerny knocked in two RBIS with a double to the left-field wall to give the Braves an 8-5 lead.Alford drove in McInerny on a sacrifice fly and Hamrick drove in the last RBI to give the Braves a 10-5 win.
“We split with Effingham last weekend and we were the better team for 14 innings so we wanted to come down and not have a letdown, you know,” Coach Arnold said. “Being down five runs and then turning around and putting up 10 unanswered runs was pretty big. I think our momentum right now guys are feeling a little good at the plate and our pitching is doing a really good job. So I think we’re just gonna keep rolling and I hope we keep rolling.”
Against St. Anthony, the Braves lost 12-8. The Braves won the weekend doubleheader against Taylorville to improve to 6-2 on the season. This week the Braves will face Metamora and Chatham-Glenwood.