(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
DEXTER -- Able to make up for any problems in the field with their bats, the Dexter Bearcats were able to turn an early five run deficit against New Madrid County Central Thursday afternoon into a 21-11 win.
"They scored (seven) runs early on us, but they only had maybe one hard hit ball," Dexter coach Brian Becker said. "All the rest of them were dying quails out there. It's kind of frustrating watching hits just kind of barely missed by the infielder or barely missed by the outfielder.
"It was frustrating early, but we bounced back, started putting some hits together and had a pretty good game."
Down 7-2 entering the bottom of the third, the Bearcats started their comeback by scoring five runs in the frame to tie the Eagles before a four run sixth put Dexter ahead for good.
Entering the sixth frame up by eight runs at 15-7, Dexter looked like it might be in trouble when the first three NMCC batters in the inning reached before coming around to score.
Closing to within four with one more run in the frame, Sam Barnett came home on a Collin Ivie hit ball that was misplayed at short with the bases loaded and two outs to make it 15-11.
With the tying run up at the plate, however, the Eagles run came to an end when Bearcat pitcher Jordan Miller recorded a strike out to end the inning.
Not wanting to give NMCC another shot to catch up in the seventh, Dexter began the bottom of the sixth scoring five runs before NMCC could record an out to close within one run of a mercy rule.
Not long after, with the bases loaded and one out, Cody Neldon took a full count offering for a ball to walk in Alex Cliff to end the game.
On the game, the Bearcats collected 14 hits with leadoff hitter Chase Young leading the team going 4-for-4 and a walk.
"Chase had a heck of a game today," Becker said. "He's one of the better sophomores I've had here. He struggled a little bit early with the bat and now he's starting to break out of it.
"Anytime you can get your leadoff hitter on five times you're going to put a lot of runs on the board and he provided that spark for us today."
Cliff, Josh Sifford, Miller and Brandon Potts contributed two hits apiece to Dexter's cause with Sifford recording two doubles.
The Eagles also put up 14 hits, with Gabe Smith going 4-for-4 with two doubles to lead the team. Ivie had three hits on the game while Jayshawn McDaniel and Jimmy Ash each had two.
Sam Barnett hit the game's only home run when, in the third, he bounced a shot off the top of the fence that fell back in play in left field.
With the left fielder hurt on the play crashing into the fence trying to make the play, Barnett was able to speed around the bases before the Bearcat center fielder could collect the ball for an inside the park home run.
"We moved some runners today," NMCC coach Joseph McClarty said. "We took our time at the plate. They seemed like they were trying to keep it away from us, throwing a lot of curveballs and things like that and our kids were patient and we hit the ball hard and we ran the bases well.
"But hats off to Dexter and coach Becker. They're never going to quit. That's the style that they play and they keep coming at you. They got a good win today."
Dexter improves to 6-3 on the year while NMCC is 2-5.
NMCC 223 004 - 11
Dexter 205 446 - 21
WP -- Logan Northern. WP -- Jayshawn McDaniel. 2B -- (N) Gabe Smith 2; (D) Josh Sifford. HR -- (N) Sam Barnett.