By DOUG EADS
The Southwestern Warriors held on down the stretch on Friday afternoon to sweep Pulaski County this season on the baseball diamond, winning at PC Field by a 9-5 score in the annual Cancer Awareness game.
Ethan Jones led the Warrior hit parade with three hits, and Tanner McKee had a clutch, bases-clearing triple in the second inning, helping Alex Eaton and crew improve to 19-4 on the season with the victory.
Pleased with the win obviously against their arch-rival PC, Eaton noted afterwards that Friday’s game meant just a bit more than the final outcome on the scoreboard for the Warriors.
“Tonight’s game was a lot more than a baseball game,” stated Eaton after his club’s win over Pulaski County.
“I hope our guys were touched by all the names that were announced that have been touched by cancer,” continued the Southwestern head coach. “It’s just unreal the number of lives that have been affected by it. It’s just a blessing to be able to step on a baseball field and play the game.”
Playing the game is exactly what Southwestern was able to do early on in this contest, jumping out on top of the Maroons by plating four runs in the top of the second frame, and tacking on a pair of runs in the top half of the third.
The big hit came off the bat of Tanner McKee in the second inning, as his bases-loaded double drove in all three runs for a very quick, 4-0 Southwestern lead, after the Warriors had already scored a run.
After tacking on two more runs the next frame, Pulaski County tried to get off the mat, thanks to Konner Hargis.
After Colton Fraley and Caleb Adams reached base on singles, Hargis went deep for a three-run shot to put some life back into the Maroons in the home half of the fourth inning.
PC would eventually trim the Southwestern lead down to a pair of runs at 7-5, but the 10-13 Maroons couldn’t get over the proverbial hump, thanks to Southwestern adding on two more insurance runs in the top of the seventh frame, taking advantage of a pair of costly Maroon errors.
“Tonight’s game was not the prettiest that we have played all year,” pointed out Eaton after his club’s victory.
“We made some mistakes defensively, and we left too many guys on base,”added the Warrior skipper. “I believe we left nine guys on, most of those were in scoring position. We have to lock in mentally and have productive outs.”
Both PC and Southwestern were scheduled to return to action today (Saturday) — weather permitting.
The Warriors were to host Cumberland County, while the Maroon were scheduled to play at Campbellsville.