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Just two days removed from an 8-5 loss to rival North Oldham, the South Oldham Dragons evened the season series Friday night, routing the Mustangs 13-6 to claim their first district win of the season.
After a frustrating performance in the team’s first meeting, South Oldham coach Matt Wilson said he was proud of his team’s play in round two.
“We came out together as a team and we changed what we did from Tuesday,” Wilson said, smiling. “We came out on top, and we came out big with 13 runs.”
Despite being scheduled as a home game for North, poor field conditions forced a move to Bill Cofer Field where the Dragons wasted no time establishing an early lead on their home turf.
The Mustangs found an answer in the bottom half of the first inning, however, reeling off three runs of their own by way of an error and two-run single by Cameron Masterman.
Following an RBI single by Tyler Patton in the top of the second to cut the lead to one, South Oldham retook the advantage in a decisive third inning, plating nine runs to put the game out of reach, 11-3.
North Oldham would add three more runs over the next two innings on an error and RBI singles from Caleb Kellogg and Peter Sohn, but that’s as close as they would get.
South Oldham’s Noah Frantz came on in relief in the bottom of the fifth to close out the game, recording four strikeouts.
“They just out executed us,” North Oldham coach Erik Phelps said. “They were better on the mound than us today. I told the guys before the game that this was a ‘want-to’ game. It was a cold Friday night, and I think they wanted it more than we did. Hats off to them. They forced us to make plays and we didn’t.”
Braden Johnson recorded the win for South Oldham on the mound, allowing six runs over four innings in his first start of the season due to injury. Johnson struck out three, walked none and gave up 10 hits.
“He hasn’t thrown a lot of live pitching, so once he found his changeup, the whole baseball game changed,” Wilson said. “He got people to roll it over and pop it up, and then we got it into a groove. I’m so proud of Braden.”
For Johnson, he’s just happy to be contributing again.
“It feels great to come out and beat North,” he said. “There’s nothing really you can say about it. I didn’t pitch my best game, but I guess a win is a win. I’m just really, really happy to be back.”
The Dragons were led on the offensive end by Alec Straker and Ticorion Williams, who teamed up for four hits and three RBIs.
The win pushes the Dragons to 7-9, while North Oldham falls to 7-6.
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