By Rob Kiser
The Piqua baseball team has plenty to be excited about.
And the Indians continue to make that 0-4 start to the season a distant memory.
Piqua took advantage of a young West Carrollton pitching staff Saturday, winning 13-2 in five innings.
It was the Indians seventh win in the last eight games as they improved to 7-5 on the season heading into GWOC North action with Greenville Monday and Tuesday,
“The kids were here early and were excited to get out there,” Piqua coach Jared Askins said. “I think they feel like we have built up some momentum and want to keep that going. We have a lot of momentum right now.”
Sophomore Austin Davis — seeing his first action this week as he works his way back from a knee injury — pitched two and two-thirds innings to get the win.
“That was the plan, to get Austin (Davis) out there and let him throw a couple innings and test the knee,” Askins said. “He had a little soreness, which was to be expected. It had been so long since he had been out there.”
Davis pitched two scoreless innings, before giving up a two-run single to Taylan King in the third.
Zach Luttrell came in to get the final out and pitched two more scoreless innings.
“Zach (Luttrell) had a little bit of a sore arm and we wanted to get him back out there,” Askins said. “Both guys threw really well.”
At the plate, it was the ultimate in small ball for Piqua as the Indians scored 13 runs on just four hits.
Noah Martin and Alex Smith combined to walk nine and hit two batters in four innings, with the Pirates defense also committing three errors.
“We did a good job taking advantage of our opportunities and that is what you want to see,” Askins said.
Piqua scored in every inning.
The first started with Cory Cottrell being hit by a pitch and Noah Lyman and Travis Smith walking.
Derrick Gullett had a RBI single, Derek Hite added a two-run single, Gullett scored on a wild pitch and Hite scored on Davis’ fielder’s choice to make it 5-0.
Piqua added three more runs in the second without a hit.
The fourth walk of the inning — a bases-loaded to Hite — forced in one run and gave him his seventh RBI in two games.
Cottrell and Gullett then scored on the same wild pitch — with Gullett hustling in from second base.
“We had a lot of speed on the bases and those guys were able to make things happen out there,” Askins said. “We did a great job running bases all game.”
Piqua scored two more in the third, including a RBI double by Cottrell.
Piqua added three more runs in the fifth without a hit.
There were two walks and two errors — with Rupert Delacruz picking up a RBI on a fielder’s choice.
“Everybody played well today,” Askins said.
Piqua, who shares first place with Vandalia-Butler in the GWOC North at 4-0, plays at Greenville Monday before hosting the Wave Tuesday.
Greenville is coming off an upset of Troy.
“We have to take them one game at a time,” Askins said. “We jut have to be ready to play Monday at Greenville.”
And continue the momentum.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at 937-451-3334.