Hillsboro American Legion Post 129 traveled to Chillicothe on Tuesday to take on American Legion Post 62 in double header action at Ross County Park. Post 129 came away with the sweep after defeating the home team by 5-1 in the first game and 4-3 in the second game.
Post 129 got off to a slow start in the first game of the double header as starting pitcher Timmy Crone, of Fayetteville, singled in the top of the first inning prior to Hillsboro’s Cayse Cameron striking out to end the inning. The bottom of the first inning featured Crone striking out the first batter, forcing the second batter into a 6-3 ground out, and finally striking out the third batter of the inning to retire Post 62 in straight order.
Kelton Anderson, of Hillsboro, started the second inning with a single, however the next two batters flew out and struck out respectively. Anderson went on to be caught stealing third base for the final out of the inning. The bottom of the second inning saw Post 62 attempt a two out rally after the first two batters of the inning were retired in order. The next two batters for Chillicothe both drew walks, with the number six batter reaching third base before the batter in the eight spot for Chillicothe struck out to end the inning.
The third inning saw Post 129 put up two runs to take the lead in the game. Hillsboro’s Justin Scott started the inning off with single and Drew Batson, of Miami Trace, followed up with a single of his own to place runners on first and second for the Highland County representatives. Payton Bell, of Hillsboro, was up next smashing a fly ball that the center-fielder was unable to handle, resulting in Scott and Batson scoring on the play to give Post 129 a 2-0 lead. Crone drew a walk in the inning but was put out on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Cameron. Anderson stepped to the plate and drew a walk to place runners on first and second with two outs. Washington Court House’s Avery Wilson ended the possible rally with a fly ball to right field to end the inning. The bottom of the third was another chance for Post 129 to demonstrate their newfound defensive focus. After allowing the first batter of the inning to reach base, he went on to be caught stealing, Crone got the second batter of the inning to ground out before striking out third batter to end the inning.
The top of the fourth inning was uneventful for the Highland County representatives with only four batters making the trip to the plate. The bottom of the fourth saw Post 62 score their only run of the night courtesy of an RBI single by the five hole hitter.
The fifth inning was a quick one for both teams with only three batters making plate appearances for each team.
Post 129 added two insurance runs in to top of the sixth inning as Wilson and Evan Brill, of Whiteoak, both scored in the inning. Wilson got things started for Post 129 with a lead-off single, Brill followed up with a single of his own to put runners on first and second. Up next was Scott who was promptly hit by a pitch to load the bases. Batson came up big for the local team when he smacked a two RBI double to plate Wilson and Brill extending his team’s lead to 4-1. It was three up and three down for Post 62 in the bottom of the inning as the defense proved to be stout when Crone forced all three batters to ground out.
Anderson smacked a double and scored a run in the top of the seventh inning giving Post 129 more than enough to get the victory. Anderson was driven in off of the second double of the inning for the visitors by Brill. Crone finished things off in the bottom of the seventh. Despite allowing a two out single Crone was able to collect himself and strike out the next batter to end the game.
The second game of the night was a much closer affair as Post 62 found the life in their bats.
After the first two innings were contested without either team scoring a run Post 129 got on the board first when Bell doubled as the second batter in the inning. Bell went on to score in the inning on an error by the third baseman for Post 62.
Post 62 answered in a big way in the bottom of the fourth inning scoring three runs. Post 62 was able to take advantage of miscues by the defense to get the first three batters of the inning on base, all three went on to score for Chillicothe to give the home team a 3-1 advantage.
Post 129 closed the door on Post 62 scoring three runs over the last three innings and not allowing the home team to answer as the defense stepped up and made the necessary plays. Post 129 went on to win by a final score of 4-3.
Scott Morgan, the head coach of Post 129, commended his pitching on two excellent games. “Crone and Brill threw outstanding games.”, Morgan said.
When asked about his teams improved play recently Morgan had this to say, “We have been making fewer mistakes which allows our pitchers to keep their pitch count low. That has minimized big innings for our opponents.”
Post 129 is scheduled to take part in the four day Jim Jadwin Memorial Tournament that starts today in Chillicothe.
Reach Ryan Applegate at 937-402-2572, or on Twitter @RCApplegate89.
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