By Rob Kiser
Piqua Daily Call
The Piqua baseball team got off to a fast start against Northwestern Tuesday at Hardman Field.
But, the momentum quickly changed in a 17-6 loss in five innings.
Piqua dropped to 1-1 on the season, while it was the season opener for Northwestern.
The Indians had taken a big lead in the. home first, going up 5-0 after scoring five runs on one hit.
After a walk to Zack Lavey and Mick Karn being hit by a pitch, Owen Toopes had a RBi single.
With two outs and the bases loaded, Blane Ouhl was hit by a pitch to make it 2-0 and when Matt Wellman reached on an error, three runs scored.
Northwestern closed the gap with four runs in the second, capped by a two-run single by Ben Van Noord.
The. Warriors took a 6-5 lead in the third with two more run, including an RBI double by Jansen Jenkins.
Piqua tied the game in the home third on a RBI double by Ethan Pohlshneider, which scored Toopes who had reached on an error.
But, Northwestern scored five runs in the fourth and sixth in the fifth to end it.
In the fourth, Gavin Thomas had a RBI double, Dane Sowards and Jenkins had bases-loaded walks and Austin Monroe had a scacrifice fly.
In the fifth, three Piqua errors opened the door to a big inning.
Trey Beard had a RBI single in the inning.
Toopes, Karn and Pohlschneider combined on the pitching effort for Piqua, striking out five, walking seven and hitting two batters. They allowed 10 hits.
Evan Nofke went the distance for Northwestern.
He pitched a two-hitter, striking out two, walking two and hitting two batters.
Piqua will host Trotwood-Madison Friday.
COVINGTON — The Covington baseball team has already doubled its fun this season.
After winning one game last year, the Buccs are off to a 2-0 start after beating Franklin Monroe 5-2 in the Cross Country Conference opener Tuesday.
“The guys are excited with how they have started this year,” Covington coach Andy Johnson said.. “But, they do realize this is just the beginning. We have a lot more to accomplish.”
Franklin Monroe struck first with a run in the top of the second, but Covington was able to manufacture a pair of runs in the third thanks to a timely squeeze bunt by senior Gavin McReynolds.
“Gavin laid down a squeeze bunt to score Cooper (Jay) and Colton (Francis scored all the way from first on the overthrow,” Johnson explained. “Your leaders always come through in the clutch, and that’s exactly what Gavin did tonight. The squeeze bunt he put down changed the momentum of the game. He is willing to do what it takes for the team to win. That squeeze bunt changed the whole ball game.”
Because up to that point Covington couldn’t get anything going offensively to help out what was a stellar pitching effort by Colton Francis. The junior hurler tossed a one-hitter and held off Franklin Monroe despite three Buccaneer errors in the field.
“Colton threw a fantastic game tonight,” praised Johnson of his junior hurler. “Giving up one hit, and striking out eight, you can’t ask for much more. He gutted it out and finished what he started. He showed a lot of growth and maturity in how he performed out there.”
With Francis in command on the hill, Covington broke the game open with three runs in the bottom of the sixth thanks to big hits by Trentin Alexander, and Wes Gooding.