DUBLIN — Midway’s baseball Raiders brought a hitting machine to West Bladen High on Friday, crushing 13 hits against the Knights en route to a 9-1 Four County Conference win.
The loss dropped West Bladen to 6-5 overall and 3-4 in the conference, while Midway moved to 9-1 overall and 6-0 in the conference.
The Raiders struck quickly, using a pair of hits and an error to score a run in the top of the first. But West Bladen came within a foot of answering right back when C.J. Singletary led off the home half of the inning with a single, stole second and went to third on a groundout. And then Knights coach Kim Cain got aggressive, calling for a suicide squeeze.
And it would have worked, too — except the Midway pitcher threw a short-hopper to his catcher, making it impossible for Clay Allen, the West Bladen hitter, to bunt. Singletary, meanwhile, had gotten a huge jump and was well on his way to the plate, unable to shift into reverse. In a nearly bang-bang play, he was out.
“I wanted to tie the game up quickly,” Cain said of the call. “Of all the pitches to throw like that — but that’s how the breaks have gone for us this season.”
The Raiders added two more runs on four hits in the second inning and another in the third on doubles that came on consecutive pitches for a 4-0 lead before the Knights began another threat.
Parker Allen singled and, after two outs, Singletary got into a pitch and drove it to deep left-center for an RBI double before getting stranded at second.
Midway scored a pair of runs in the top of the fourth on two hits and two sacrifice flys, then added one more run in the fifth on a walk and double.
West Bladen manufactured a mild threat in the bottom of the fifth when Allen reached on a one-out infield single, but was erased on a fielder’s choice. A Raiders error put runners at first and third with two outs, but the uprising fizzled there.
Midway scored its final two runs in the sixth on two hits, a walk and hit batter to extend the lead to 9-1.
In the bottom of the seventh, West Bladen began what looked like a notable rally. Allen reached when he was hit by a pitch and Michael Pastore walked. But the Raiders’ reliever fanned the next three hitters to end the threat and the game.
“We just didn’t hit the ball, and that’s the name of the game,” Cain said. “And those guys really do hit well.”
Allen led West Bladen at the plate, going 2-for-2, while Singletary was 2-for-4 with the double and RBI. John Waldrop had the Knights only other hit.
Travis Bowen took the loss on the hill, hurling four innings and giving up six runs on 10 hits. Jeremy Hunt went 1.1 innings and gave up three runs on a hit, three walks and a hit batter. Kevin Rice finished up, going 1.2 innings and giving up two hits and two walks.