Needing just 10 hits to produce 22 runs, the Delta Panther baseball team got creative in sweeping Northwood 7-0 and 15-1 in a non-league baseball doubleheader at Jim Harmon Field Saturday.
“So close to the tournament, we’ve got to get our pitching staff ready to go,” Delta coach Damon Mattimore said after the win. “That can be a tricky situation. The weather we had last week pushed everybody back and we had a couple bullpen sessions inside. Today, we were ready to play baseball.”
In the opener, the Panthers scored single runs in the first three innings, then added two each in the fourth and fifth frames. They kept that going in the nightcap, before exploding for five runs in the second, three in the third and six in the fourth in a 15-1 decision.
“We took advantage of some HBP’s (hit batters) and walks,” admitted Mattimore. “We ran the bases and that’s all a part of baseball. We executed well today.”
Cole Mattin collected two hits in the opening game. In the finale, Jason Beverly had a big game, hitting a single and a triple, driving in a run and scoring three times.
Pitching was also just as solid for the Panthers. Gabe Freeman pitched six shutout innings in the first game, lowering his team-best 0.70 ERA. He scattered three hits and fanned 12. Travis Dunning allowed just two Northwood hits in the closer in four innings, with two walks and six punchouts.
“He’s had a great year for us and he’s one of them we need to get ready for our tournament run,” the Delta coach said about the first game winner. “Travis Dunning also did very well today.”
Delta has a busy week ahead with the tournament looming. The Panthers (13-9) host Fairview Monday and will play Liberty Center at home Wednesday in a Division III sectional semifinal. Delta also added a home game Thursday with Holgate.
Reach Randy Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org