KNIGHTSTOWN — Knightstown has not won a baseball sectional since 1981, but the way the Panthers have been playing at the start of this season, that could very well change this spring.
The 2A No. 5 Panthers went into Saturday’s doubleheader with Eastern Hancock having outscored their first four opponents 63-4, and looked to add to that total at the Royals’ expense.
While Knightstown did sweep EH, 9-2 and 5-4, it wasn’t so much the Panthers’ doing the damage as it was the Royals themselves on defense.
The Royals committed six errors in the opener and all but one of Knightstown’s runs were unearned. And in the nightcap, the Panthers scored on a passed ball in the last of the sixth to break a 4-all tie.
It was particularly inopportune for the Royals to fall as they did in the opener, whereas the second-game defeat might have been more heartbreaking. Only the first contest counted in the Mid-Hoosier Conference standings. EH (3-4) fell to 1-2 in the MHC.
“If we don’t play defense and throw strikes, we can’t win ballgames,” EH coach Chad Coughenour said. “I thought our pitchers did a decent job, but we just didn’t do our job on defense. If we do our job, we can play with anybody.”
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