King of the ‘Hole’
While it may have taken the Charles Henderson varsity baseball squad seven innings, the end result was the same as it has been all throughout the Terry Sikes Invitational – a ‘W’.
The Trojans played host to its third team in two nights and thanks to a strong performance on the mound by senior Mitch McLeod as well as taking advantage of opportunities, CHHS came away with a 8-2 win over the Northridge Jaguars.
McLeod pitched a complete game, striking out 12 in the victory, while allowing just two-runs, which came off the bat of Trent Waddell in the top of the second inning.
“Felt pretty good out there,” McLeod said after the game. “Other than the mistake I made in the second inning.”
“He had a good swing on the ball – don’t expect a 7th hole hitter to do that but he made good contact.”
The Trojans would respond to the two-run deficit, a half inning later thanks to a K.D. Edenfield double, tying that game at two.
An inning later, CHHS would add three more runs to extend the lead to 5-2, which would be more than enough for the senior pitcher.
“Coach told us to come out strong and not worry about the first two games, we got started off slow, but finished strong,” said McLeod, who also finished 3-4 with two runs scored.
This was the first time in three games, the Trojans had not beaten its opponent by 10 runs or more, and head coach Derek Irons said he could see some of the effect early on in the game.
“For the first two and a half innings, I thought we played OK,” Irons said.
“I told the guys that are goals are not to play OK, but to play great and after that we changed things around and played much better from then on.”
However, before the team could turn things around, it faced something it had not see in a while, according to the coach.
“That home run was the first adversity we had really faced all week,” the coach said.
“And Mitch didn’t bat an eye afterwards.”
“We talked about being able to respond and we were able to do so pretty quickly, which I was very happy about.”
With the win, CHHS remained undefeated in Hogan’s hole as well as improved to 3-0 in the invitational and 7-2 overall for the season.
“It’s always good to protect home turf,” Irons said.
“Our guys take a lot of pride in playing at home, and that is very encouraging to the coaching staff.
“They know that road win are hard to come by and these getting home wins is very important,” he added.
The Trojans will next take on Butler County Magnet today at noon at Riddle-Pace Field.