After clubbing five home runs in three games over the weekend in the McCracken County Tournament, the Bulldogs went to the long ball again on Monday afternoon against Poplar Bluff, blasting two more homers.
The biggest home run coming from sophomore Tyler Anderson's walk-off solo home run to cap a thrilling 7-6 victory over the Mules.
The Bulldogs had to battle back from deficits throughout the game, including a two-out bloop single by Evan Underwood to bring home the tying run in the bottom of the sixth.
Leading off the bottom of the seventh, Anderson brought the game to a close with a towering shot over the left field fence on a 3-2 pitch.
"He was waiting for the fastball and he got it, but you've still got to be able to hit it and Tyler did," Sikeston coach Kevin Self said. "He got a good swing on it."
Anderson has now hit four home runs in his last three games.
"It feels good, especially my first one in high school," Anderson said. "It just feels unreal right now. I had 2-2 and he missed with a curve ball and so it's full count and usually you look for a fastball and that's what came. I'm kind of disappointed I went 1-for-4, but the one hit counted."
The Bulldogs got a big lift from sophomore hurler Trey Tigart, who entered the game in relief to pick up the win. He limited the Mules to one unearned run in three innings while striking out five and allowing just one hit.
"Trey gave us a chance," Self said. "He came in and really threw well. He didn't give anything up. Anything they got, we gave to them."
The win was gratifying, but Self is hoping his team can correct numerous defensive mistakes that were made throughout the game, including a handful of misplayed pop ups and fly balls.
"Our defense is better than we played today," Self said. "We just looked awful on pop ups. This is one of those high skies and sometimes it's tough to judge balls off the bat sometimes. You wouldn't think you would have trouble like that with a clear blue sky, but you do. With the sun the way it is and the wind, we just did not look good on pop ups. Even though we didn't play well defensively, they didn't either. But good teams will figure out a way to win no matter how you play."
Sikeston (5-1) got the early lead in the bottom of the first on a Nathan Rodgers sacrifice fly to bring in Luke Keefer.
Poplar Bluff (1-4) responded with two runs in the top of the second on run-scoring singles by Brad Dorr and Trenton Eudaley to lead 2-1.
The Mules extended the lead to 3-1 on Travis Stone's RBI-single in the top of the third.
The Bulldogs got a run back in the bottom of the third on Keefer's solo homer over the left field fence, cutting the lead to 3-2.
After the Mules took a 5-2 lead on Chance Berry's two-run double, Sikeston tied the game in the bottom of the fourth on back to back doubles by Ross Bohannon and Clayton Driskell and then a sacrifice fly by Keefer.
Poplar Bluff once again took the lead in the top of the sixth when Charlie Kayser's fielder's choice brought in Trenton Eudaley to lead 6-5.
Sikeston kept its composure and was able to plate the tying and winning runs in the final two innings.
Poplar Bluff's Quinton West took the loss in going the distance. He allowed seven runs (six earned) off seven hits while striking out five and walking three.
"It was a heartbreaker for our kid pitching," Poplar Bluff coach Stan Bullington said. "He gutted it out and we stretched him out a little further than we wanted to go. He was throwing well, but he had trouble getting the curve ball over for a strike and that put us in some jams. The bottom line is we need to catch the ball when it's in the air. They struggled with it too -- it was a tough day with the sun and the wind, but a lot of balls in the air that need to be caught."
Bohannon started for the Bulldogs, throwing four innings and allowing five runs (three earned) off seven hits with five strikeouts and three walks.
Underwood led the Bulldogs going 2-for-3 with an RBI and a stolen base. Keefer went 1-2 with two RBIs and two runs.
Poplar Bluff was led by Stone, who went 2-4 with an RBI.
The Bulldogs will be off until Monday when they host Dexter at 4 p.m.
|Poplar Bluff||021 201 0 -- 6|
|Sikeston||101 301 1 -- 7|
WP -- Trey Tigart. LP -- Quinton West. 2B -- (PB) Chance Berry, Travis Stone. (S) Ross Bohannon, Clayton Driskell. HR -- (S) Luke Keefer, Tyler Anderson.
|Poplar Bluff||200 140 0 -- 7|
|Sikeston||000 200 0 -- 2|
WP -- Pratt. LP -- Gavin O'Brien.