SC climbs in polls after winning four more
After racing out to a 10-1 record, with the only loss coming at the hands of Clarksville, South Central’s baseball team received statewide recognition thanks to a No. 9 ranking in the Class 1A poll put out by the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association.
On Monday, the Rebels improved to 4-0 in the Southern Athletic Conference with a victory against New Washington.
A twin-bill against Henryville on May 20 is the only league game left on South’s slate.
‘We’ve won the close games, which is encouraging. It’s nice to get the recognition, but we that means we need to show up and play and show that we deserve to be in the polls,’ South Central first-year coach Nick Tremain said. ‘It was good to come out and hit the ball against New Washington after some of the games we had where we didn’t score many runs. Hopefully that can get us going and help us score a lot more runs the rest of the season.’
Against the 2-10 Mustangs, Darrin Pellman blasted his first home run of the year ‘ a three-run blast ‘ and Cody Simpson hit a grand slam and marked six RBI.
‘Cody hit his to straightaway center, so we weren’t sure if it was going to go out,’ Tremain said. ‘He was due one of those and since it was a grand slam, he was really excited.’
Greg Gehlbach, who improved to 3-0 and struck out seven, helped his own cause with a solo shot.
The Rebels kicked off a successful week of action with a 5-4 win over Christian Academy last Thursday.
Chad McRae was 3-for-3 with a triple and two RBI, Dustin Hornickel had a double and a RBI, plus picked up the win on the bump.
Gehlbach earned the save.
‘We got up 5-2, then they got two in the fifth. Dustin got the bases loaded and then we brought in Greg. They scored two, but Greg was able to hold them for the rest of the game,’ Tremain said.
South swept Borden in a double-header on a soggy Saturday morning.
In the first game, Borden posted a pair of runs in the bottom of the third, but the visiting Rebels responded with a six-spot in the top of the fourth.
‘It was a cold, rainy day and our bats just didn’t come alive until the fourth. We drew a couple of walks and hand a couple of big hits at the bottom of the order,’ said Tremain. ‘After that, Chad got going.’
McRae struck out eight and gave up five hits and three runs (one earned) in seven innings of work. The effort pushed his record to 5-0 on the season.
Gehlbach, Pellman, McRae and John Lopp all hit doubles in the victory. Borden’s Matthew Vick also had a two-bagger.
The second game went to the Rebels, 10-5, as freshman Joe Metcalf won in his first outing as a pitcher.
‘He went seven innings and struck out nine guys, so that was real encouraging,’ Tremain said. ‘Early on in the season we didn’t get a chance to go deep in our staff due to some rainouts, but we’ve had a chance to see our depth here lately and the pitchers have responded well.’
South wasted no time jumping on the host Braves, scoring two in the first, four in the second and three in the third for a 9-0 lead.
Gehlbach, Lopp, Pellman and Borden’s Jeremy Blandford all knocked doubles, with Gehlbach hitting a triple.
Borden’s Willice Baker had a three-bagger as well.
The slate will toughen up for South Central in the coming days and weeks.
The Rebels host No. 10 Orleans on Saturday at 11 a.m., travel to Lanesville on May 11, take on No. 5 Springs Valley in the Crawford County Tournament on May 13, will travel to No. 8 Henryville on May 20 and host county-foe North Harrison on May 22.
‘We’ll get a good chance to find out where we’re at,’ Tremain said. ‘That will be a tough test as the season comes to an end.’