Seasons cut short for NH, CC
Both Corydon Central and North Harrison were eliminated in their first games at the Class 3A Madison Sectional last week. The Panthers were caged by Scottsburg, 6-2, while North was shaded by Silver Creek, 2-0.
The host Cubs defeated Silver Creek in the championship game, 5-2, to win their 20th sectional title and third straight.
Silver Creek 2, N.H. 0
Last year, it was the hidden ball hoodwink that helped his team eliminate North Harrison. This year, Silver Creek coach Terry Davison ruffled through his bag of tricks again and pulled out a rare steal of home to give his Dragons the only score they’d need to knock off the Cougars last Wednesday night.
With two outs in the bottom of the first and North Harrison’s Scott Burdin on the mound, Kyle Barnett stole home on a 2-2 count to Bart Page. Barnett easily beat the ball to the plate.
From there, Eric Eickholtz kept the Cougars at bay from his perch, firing a two-hit shutout to lead Silver Creek (18-8) to Friday’s championship game against Madison, 2-0.
‘Barnett is my best base runner as far as game savvy goes, and as soon as we saw (Burdin) going out of the windup, we started talking about it,’ Silver Creek head coach Terry Davidson said. ‘It’s not a play you always work on, but you always keep these kind of plays in the back of your mind in case the situation comes up. It was early in the game, and I thought we might as well take a chance.’
Silver Creek ‘ using Eickholtz on the mound and Barnett to pull off the dupe ‘ used the hidden ball trick to squelch a rally by North Harrison in last year’s sectional opener. The Dragons won that one, 5-3.
‘Don’t tell them of all my tricks,’ Davidson joked.
‘In 21 years of coaching, this is only the second time I’ve seen a guy steal home. That just doesn’t happen very often,’ North Harrison head coach Danny Schmidt said. ‘They caught Scott in a slow motion and the kid got a good jump.’
Schmidt went on to point out that since Silver Creek scored again later ‘ and his squad failed to get a runner past second base ‘ it was hard to suggest the slow delivery to the plate by Burdin was the reason for North’s loss.
‘It was one of those games where you had two pitchers on top of their games. Two guys that struck out eight a piece and only gave up two or three hits each ‘ that’s pretty good. It was a good ball game,’ Schmidt said. ‘It was just a matter of a few pitches here or there.’
Silver Creek’s second run came in the fourth.
Brian Stemle walked and moved to second on a wild pitch. Brian Browne singled home his teammate one batter later.
The Cougars (15-9) saw a prime scoring opportunity fritter away in the sixth.
Brenden Zellers reached on an error and Jon Couts singled. Eickholtz fanned both Ray VonAllmen and Burdin. Stewart Wenning hit a rocket back to Creek’s twirler, who snared the ball and flipped it to the ground.
North Harrison brought the tying run to the plate in the seventh: Ty Rothrock walked to lead off the inning, but Zach Janes grounded into a twin-killing. Matt Weathers struck out to end the game.
‘If our team comes out and plays like they did tonight every game, we’re going to win a lot of ballgames, but just not tonight.
‘We had a situation there in the sixth, and I had to make a decision,’ Schmidt of his decision to let VonAllmen swing away with runners at first and second and no outs. ‘With first and second and our second leading hitter on the team up there, I felt good. I gambled with him swinging away. The baseball theory is you bunt them over. I know I was breaking all kinds of baseball rules there, but I took a chance.’
Schmidt said it was the third time in two years that Eickholtz had the Cougars’ number.
‘Give him credit. He was on top of his game tonight. He pitched a good game. This is the first time we have been shut out all year.’
Eickholtz struck out eight and walked two while Burdin walked three and struck out eight.
Scottsburg 6, Corydon 2
After a mid-game, 45-minute rain delay, Scottsburg rallied from an early deficit to knock off Corydon Central, 6-2, on Tuesday evening.
The Panthers scored two in the top of the second inning. Travis Basham led off with a walk and was followed by singles by Josh Wiley and Derek Smith. David Bradstock reached on an error to bring home his team’s final run.
Scottsburg countered with a run in the bottom of the third and then blew the game open with three more runs in the fourth and two in the sixth.
Smith, Wiley and Braun were the only Panther batters to single off Scottsburg’s pitcher.
Caleb Pool tripled and Geoff Boyd doubled for the Warriors, who won the 2004 Mid-Southern Conference baseball championship.