The Russellville Indians baseball team held on to win 3-2 in a close game against the Linn Wildcats on June 29.
Russellville led 1-0 after the first inning. The scored remained that way until the top of the third inning, when Russellville had the bases loaded and one out in the inning. A sacrifice fly by Trenton Morrow made it 2-0 and an RBI single by Matthew Miller scored the Indians’ last run of the day to make it 3-0.
Throughout the game, the Indians were aggressive early in the count in their at bats. Head coach Lucas Branson said that being aggressive is part of what they have worked on in practice.
“Our offensive philosophy is aggressive with discipline early in at bats, so it was just an extension of what we work on in practice taking place in the game,” Branson said.
Russellville had a chance to add to the lead in the fourth inning, as the Indians had runners in scoring position with one out, but the team was unable to get a run to score in that inning. They also had a chance in the sixth inning, with a runner on third with no outs, but were not able to score in that inning, either.
Despite being able to get runners on base throughout the game, Russellville was unable to score after the third inning. Branson said in situations like that, the team has to continue to try to put together good at bats.
“Credit Linn for making some good plays and good pitching in those situations,” Branson said. “Ultimately, it came down to good pitching and defense and I feel like we are very good in those situations and it showed in this game.”
Linn got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth inning, after a sacrifice fly of their own with one out made it a 3-1 game.
In the bottom of the sixth inning the Wildcats were able to load the bases with one out and then got within one run as they scored to make it a 3-2 game. However, Indians pitcher Dawson Koch was able to strike out the next two batters to end the inning and help close out the game.
Getting out of the jam was big for the team, Branson said.
“Our kids have been in situations like that before and know how to handle it and that is a sign of knowing how to win close games,” Branson said.
Linn had a chance to tie the game in the seventh inning, with a runner on second base and two outs, but a leaping catch in right field ended the game with an Indians victory.