SIDNEY — Greenville Post 140’s baseball squad has the nickname “Thunder,” but Sidney Post 217 White was the one whose bats made thunderous sounds in an American Legion baseball game on Wednesday.
Like it has for most of the season, Post 217 White hit early and often. The squad racked up 13 hits and earned a 14-3 victory in six innings to improve to 13-3 overall.
“We’ve been able to hit,” assistant coach Tim Nixon, who is sharing coaching duties while head coach Daulton Mosbarger is on vacation, said. “Even when we were playing without (Fort) Loramie guys when they were at state, we were hitting well.
“It’s nice having the whole squad. We were missing the Loramie guys at the start and have had guys gone for senior trips and stuff like that, and we’re almost back to full strength.”
The White took control in the bottom of the first inning with six runs on four hits and three walks. It was able to run away from there and hold down the Thunder’s hitting thanks in part to several key defensive plays, including a diving catch by center fielder Ryan Schloss and two double plays.
“We’ve got a lot of talented players here that can play multiple positions,” Nixon said. “It’s fun figuring out where guys can play. It’s been a fun couple of weeks.”
Ryan Caufield started and gave up one earned run on eight hits and one walk in four innings while striking out four batters. Justin Nixon and Mack Fortman each pitched one inning in relief and combined gave up one hit while striking out one batter.
Johnny Nixon was 3 for 4 while Justin Nixon was 1 for 2 with 2 RBIs. Aiden Booth was 2 for 2 with 2 RBIs, Darren Hoying was 2 for 2 with two walks and Eric Schmidt was 1 for 1 with one double, 2 RBIs and two walks. Schloss was 1 for 2 with one walk and 2 RBIs.
Jake Sanders reached on an error in the first inning and got Post 217 White going. He reached first after hitting a grounder to third baseman Ben Ruhenkamp, who sent a throw passed Wyatt House at first base into foul territory.
Bertke hit a single to center field to score Sanders and give the squad a 1-0 lead. Johnny Nixon followed with a single on a hard grounder into center field, then Hoying hit a line-drive single to right field and drove in a run to push the lead to 2-0.
Nixon scored on a wild pitch three batters later while Fortman was at the plate. Fortman walked to load the bases, then Greenville Post 140 starter Xavier Manning walked Schmidt to score another run.
Schloss followed with an RBI single to right field to push the lead to 5-0. Schmidt got caught in a rundown between second and third, but Fortman scored from third before Schmidt was tagged out to push the lead to six runs.
Jacob Longenecker hit a two-run home run to right field in the top of the second to cut the gap to 6-2, but Sidney added two more runs in the bottom of the inning when Justin Nixon hit a 2-RBI single on a hard grounder to center field.
Ruhenkamp drove in a run in the top of the third on an RBI double to left field to cut the deficit to 8-3, but Sidney again scored two runs in the bottom half of the inning. Johnny Nixon hit an RBI single on a line-drive to right field, then Bertke scored on a wild pitch.
The White added two runs in the fourth to take a 12-3 lead. Schmidt hit a double to left field that drove in one run, then Alex Keller hit an RBI single to right field two batters later.
Keller helped end the game in the bottom of the sixth. Isaac Robey was hit by a pitch with one out, then Aiden Booth reached on an error. Keller then hit a 2-RBI single to center field to push the margin to 10 runs and end it.
Post 217 White has three road games scheduled before returning to Custenborder on July 15 for a matchup against Piqua Post 184.
Post 217 Red beat Piqua 3-2 on the road on Wednesday to improve to 7-10 and is scheduled to play three games at Custenborder over the next 10 days, beginning with a matchup against Piqua at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.
Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.