By Dennis Glade
Washington Times Herald
With Loogootee coming to the Sports Complex Wednesday afternoon, the Washington baseball team needed a strong performance. Tyler Edmiston and the Hatchet offense did just that.
Edmiston struck out eight and allowed one run. Brayden Walls had two doubles and three RBIs in Washington's 13-0 five-inning win over Wood Memorial Monday.
Edmiston struck out six Wood Memorial batters through the first three innings, as the Hatchets held a 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the third, the Washington bats came to life.
After allowing the first three Hatchets hitters to reach base, Walls knocked in two runs with a double to right field. Jake Bedwell added a sacrifice fly and Kyle Pfender scored an RBI single to push the lead to 5-0. A Max Smith run-scoring double, followed by a Colten Garland hit by pitch, and Trojan starter Jeff Williams was pulled for reliever Zach Willis.
Willis entered the game with two outs, but the bases were loaded for Washington catcher Nathan Sult. Sult laced a two-run double to center.
After Walls was walked, Tyler Edmiston added two more RBI's on a single.
Edmiston scored on a wild pitch, and the score was 13-0.
Edmiston finished out the blowout victory with only one hit allowed and eight strikeouts in five innings.
The victory was Edmiston¹s first on the season, after he earned a no-decision last week at Barr-Reeve. Monday afternoon Edmiston was facing more than just the Wood Memorial lineup.
"To Edmiston's credit, I think he threw up three times during the game," said Washington coach Steve Reed. "He's been fighting the flu. He battled through that. Two walks and eight strikeouts in five innings with a one-hitter - very efficient, I think he threw 70 pitches. He did what we needed him to do." The offense was led as usual by Walls. Walls has started this season on fire.
The senior has hits in nine of his first 13 at bats, to go along with 11 RBIs, three home runs, three doubles and one triple.
"He's just a natural, he has that natural left-handed swing," Reed said.
"He's been dropping the hammer, and he's really been getting the barrell through the zone on some of these pitches. He's actually driven a couple of doubles the other way. That's how you tell if a guy is locked in. If he's pulling balls out of the park and hitting doubles in the opposite field, he's locked in and that's what Brayden is doing right now." The offensive explosion was nice to see for Reed after Washington's 10-2 loss Saturday at the hands of Pike Central. Washington (3-2) had split its first four games this season, as it tries to find the rhythm of the young season.
"This game couldn't have come at a better time, because Saturday we laid an egg at the plate," Reed said. "I told the kids we were out of pitching, it was our fourth game in four days. We¹re not deep anyway on the mound, and that's a game you want to go win 11-10, and we just didn¹t hit. You leave there thinking, we should have battled a little bit and we watched a lot of fastballs. Today our game plan was to come out - don't take that first fast ball you see. If you get a gut check fastball early in the county, jump on it so you don¹t have to see the curve ball. We did that today and we got better results." With Loogootee coming in on Wednesday, Reed will have Walls - his ace on the mound. Loogootee, one of the top Class A teams in Southwestern Indiana, has already lost two Blue Chip conference games and will be hungry to get on track.
"We've got (Brayden) Walls on the mound, and that's always a good thing for us," Reed said. "We're at our best when he's (Walls) pitching. Loogootee is going to be gunning for us, but it is nice to be going into that game after coming off 13 runs.²
Wood Memorial 000 00 - 0 1 2
Washington 1012 x- 13 10 1
Williams, Willis (3rd) and Denny; Edmiston and Sult.
2B: (W), Walls (2), Sult, Pfender, Smith.