YORKTOWN — New Palestine’s baseball squad made a third late charge from behind in as many Hoosier Heritage Conference outings Friday night.
This one gave the Dragons the upper hand on Yorktown in Game 1 of their doubleheader, as they pushed five home in the seventh inning and prevailed 10-9.
NP had a chance to do it again the next game, but couldn’t get the tying or go-ahead runs across and ended up on the short end, 4-2.
The Dragons moved to 10-6 on the year and 3-5 in the HHC.
It was a very impressive display of “small ball” for NP in Game 1, with 12 of its 14 hits being singles – four coming in its final at-bat.
Last week against Shelbyville, the Dragons overcame a 2-0 deficit and scored twice in the last inning to win, and came from 7-0 down to go up 9-7 (they fell 10-9 in eight innings).
“Our approach at the plate was better,” NP assistant coach Landon McBride said. “We had some guys, especially in the bottom of our order, come through for us in the seventh and get some key hits for us, and we were able to scratch a few across and come away with the victory.”
Friday, Yorktown broke a 5-all tie with three in its sixth, but the Dragons broke through the next inning, sending 11 men to the plate and getting five home, two of the runs unearned.
Justin Anderson was the winning pitcher, striking out five in 2 1/3 innings in place of starter Andy Edwards. Cameron Clark saved it in the seventh, with timely defensive help.
The Tigers (8-7, 4-4 HHC) put the Dragons behind the 8-ball in the second game, as Nathan Phillips deposited a two-run shot over the left-center field fence in the top of the first (in HHC nightcaps, the hosts bat first).
NP got a run back when Nick Butcher came home on back-to-back wild pitches, after he had singled.
Other than that, the Dragons weren’t really able to solve Jake Clawson, who held NP to three hits and fanned eight in five innings.
“He had good command of his curveball and that makes your fastball a little bit quicker,” McBride said. “He did a nice job of locating it all night long and kept us off balance.”
The Dragons got to within 3-2 in the sixth and had runners on second and third with one out. But the Tigers got an unusual double play, with Anderson striking out and the catcher tagging the runner who was on third out on a rundown.
Dragons pull it out again in opener
Trailing 8-5 in the top of the seventh, with one out, Evan Hickman reached on an error and pinch-hitter Cody Chandler doubled to make it 8-6. Yorktown made a pitching change, Clay Dungan for Bailey Miller.
After another Tiger error enabled Logan Gilvin to get on and a single by Keegan Watson loaded the bases, No. 9 hitter Wes McBride singled to drive the two lead runners home, and the game was tied.
Butcher pushed Watson across to give the Dragons the lead again, for the first time since 4-2 in the fourth.
NP’s fourth straight single, this by Cameron Clark to right on a check-swing, filled the bags again. Connor Swain hit into a fielder’s choice, but that brought pinch-runner Tyler Woodcock home and the Dragons had a two-run cushion.
NP ended up leaving three aboard (Steven Clark was hit by a pitch).
Cameron Clark has solid night
Cameron Clark gave the Dragons a spark they needed in the opener, both with his bat and on the mound.
One inning after singling and scoring NP’s second run, Clark stroked one over the Tiger second baseman’s head. That sent both Jon Izbicki – running for Gilvin – and McBride home, and the Dragons were up 4-2 with two out in the fourth.
In the seventh, Clark added an excuse-me hit to shallow right for his third of the game. He also singled in the first inning of the nightcap.
“He’s a three-year starter and he has a plan as to what he’s trying to accomplish every time he’s at bat,” McBride said. “He’s been pretty solid for us.”
Clark got the ball for the last of the seventh, and after walking the first batter got Nick Robinson to hit into a 6-4-3 double play. Two Yorktown singles later, Hickman threw Blake Upchurch out trying to steal second, and NP clinched the first game.
Around the bases
The Dragons left 10 on base in the opener and seven in Game 2. ... Swain, who relieved Evan Vance for the final inning of the nightcap, struck out three in a row after allowing a run and two hits. ... Dungan had six hits on the night, four in the first game. … The opener was the second straight day in which NP scored 10 (Thursday against Connersville). ... NP hosts Warren Central Monday and Class 4A No. 1 Cathedral Wednesday.
New Palestine 10, Yorktown 9
SCORE BY INNINGS R H E
NP 101 210 5 — 10 14 3
YO 110 303 1 — 9 12 5
WP: Anderson (2-0). LP: Dungan (1-2). SV: C. Clark (1).
NP: C. Clark 3-5, 2 RBI; S. Clark 2-4, 2B, RBI; Gilvin 2-2, 2 R, RBI; Swain 2-4, RBI
YO: Dungan 4-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI; Upchurch 2-4, 3B, RBI.
Yorktown 4, New Palestine 2
SCORE BY INNINGS R H E
YO (8-7, 4-4, HHC) 201 000 1 — 4 6 4
NP (10-6, 3-5 HHC) 100 001 0 — 2 3 2
WP: Clawson (1-2). LP: Vance (2-2). SV: Dungan.
YO: Phillips 2-4, HR, 3 RBI; Dungan 2-3, 3B, 2 R.
NP: Butcher 1-3, R; Swain 3 K.