DANVILLE — East Knox Coach Kevin Gallwitz has preached to his team to be disciplined at the plate — Making a pitcher work hard for each batter and then making the defense work hard by putting the ball in play hard.
Monday, the Bulldogs took his advice to heart and it showed in the final score as the Bulldogs pounded rival Danville, 12-1.
“I was trying to stress on a day like today, you’ve got to hit line shots. With the way the wind was blowing, you hit a fly ball and it would hang, hang, hang, and their outfield would have a lot of time to get under the ball,” Gallwitz said. “We did a pretty good job of hitting line shots and swinging at good pitches today. We were pretty disciplined at the plate.”
It took a couple of batters before the Bulldogs (4-6 overall, 2-2 Mid-Buckeye Conference) completely followed the coach’s advice, but they were still able to get things started offensively. Two pop ups resulted in an error and an out before Chad Lupher smacked a single to score Jordan Moore with the first run of the game. Two passed balls and a single by Garrett Frazee got Lupher home and East Knox led 2-0.
Three straight hits from Clayton Frost, Lupher and Frazee gave the Bulldogs two more runs in the third, then they broke the game open in the fifth.
Singles from Moore, Lupher, Frazee and Zach Smith, as well as a walk by Frost, helped the Bulldogs blow the game open with five more runs.
“East Knox is a great team. They hit the ball hard and we’ve got a young team out there,” said Danville coach Brian Bratton. “I thought Dan Mickley did a good job throwing for us tonight. He does everything for us. Some times he tries to do too much.”
Danville (1-6, 0-3) was not able to solve EK pitcher Tyler Berger through three innings. He struck out seven, walked just one and allowed just one hit before turning things over to Drew Ulliman in the fourth.
The Devils didn’t fare much better against Ulliman, but were able to squeeze across a run in the fourth thanks to help from the Bulldogs. Dan Mickley reached on a fielder’s choice, moved to second on an error, stole third and came home on a wild pitch.