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Akers, Burton quiet Generals

Akers, Burton quiet Generals
Akers, Burton quiet Generals
Corydon Central shortstop Robbie Morrow makes a diving stop to prevent Nathaniel JonesÂ’ hit from leaving the infield in the fifth inning, saving a run. Photo by Brian Smith (click for larger version)

The Corydon Central baseball team has been looking for a few key hits to get the energy going.
On a Monday afternoon tilt, the Panthers used a pair of two-out hits in the fourth inning to break open the Mid-Southern Conference meeting against Clarksville to get a 6-2 win. With the victory, Corydon Central moves to 2-0 in MSC play ahead of a meeting tomorrow (Thursday) at rival North Harrison (5 p.m.).
Clarksville cut into Corydon Central’s early lead with a single run in the fourth inning on a wild pitch. The Panthers, however, escaped the frame when Mitch Akers struck out his third batter, keeping his team ahead 3-1.
At the plate in the bottom half, Shane Brown reached after being hit by a pitch. With two outs, Jordan Cockerham laced a single to left, plating Brown.
Akers followed with a quick walk, setting the table for a big hit off the stick of Chase Burton. Burton lifted the ball to the right-center field gap, plating a pair. He would end up at third base, and, more importantly, give the Panthers a more comfortable 6-1 edge.
‘We’re really a couple hits away from (a record of) 6-1 instead of 4-3,’ Corydon Central skipper Zach Sipes said. ‘Today, Chase and Jordan came up with big hits to put more runs on the board.’
Putting the ball in play was key for the home Panthers. In six innings, they only struck out one time. It’s a stat Sipes was quick to point out to his players post-game.
‘Our guys have been focusing on staying on top of the ball in practice,’ he said. ‘I told them after the game one strikeout shows we are way ahead of this point last year. If we keep focusing on being aggressive and staying on top to put pressure on the defense, we’ll be successful.’
Clarksville added an unearned run in the fifth inning when Nathaniel Jones hit a single with two outs to score a runner who reached on a miscue.
On the bump, Akers was strong once again. The right hander struck out nine in five innings to earn the win. Burton tossed two innings of relief, striking out three without putting on a runner.
‘Mitch pitched five solid innings,’ Sipes said. ‘We needed to get Chase in to get some innings. He’s only pitched once leading up to today. We wanted him to close and get work before Thursday’s game.’
Command for Akers was key on the evening. His lone trouble came in the fourth when he walked a pair of batters. He eventually struck out the side. The Generals could only generate three hits.
‘Mitch has had real good command so far this year,’ Sipes said. ‘His fastball was there today, but his better pitch today was his change-up.’
Akers helped himself out in the first inning, plating Aaron Arnold on a double. In the second inning, a walk and hit by pitch led to a pair of Corydon Central runs on two Clarksville errors.
Cockerham finished with two hits, while Brown also added a single.
William Copas pitched six innings for the Generals, taking the loss.
The Panthers will travel to North Harrison tomorrow. Part of a busy week, they will play Friday at Borden then host Crawford County on Saturday.