(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
CHAFFEE -- Breaking out for a five-run rally in the first inning on Monday, the Chaffee Squids collected nine hits to beat New Madrid County 9-2 in the first game of a doubleheader.
"I'm pleased with the way we jumped on them early, but we've had a little trouble this year getting on top of people and coasting a little bit," Chaffee coach Aaron Horrell said. "But we did plug out some extra runs and gave our pitcher (Cody Payne) some insurance and comfort to just go out there and throw strikes like we expect him to."
Opening up the bottom half of the first inning, the first four Squids to step to the plate singled before coming around to score.
Trevor Cannon and Cody Heisserer brought in the first two runs from third with a pair of singles before another pair of hits by Jared Walker and Alex Davie pushed across another three runs to give Chaffee an early 5-0 lead.
Though their bats went quiet the next two innings, Chaffee came back to score one in the fourth and two in the fifth to take a commanding 8-0 lead.
After New Madrid County cut Chaffee's advantage to six with a two-run top of the sixth, the Squids came back in the bottom of the inning and scored one last insurance run when Nolan Urhahn singled up the third base side to bring in Walker from third.
The only Chaffee batter with a pair of hits on the night, Urhahn went 2 for 3 at the plate with a double and two runs batted in. Heisserer had the team's only other extra-base hit with a double in the first.
Picking up the win for Chaffee, Cody Payne went six innings for the Squids holding New Madrid County hitless the first three innings. He allowed both New Madrid County runs on six hits and a pair of walks while striking out eight.
"He's been on vacation and he hadn't thrown much so it was good to see him come out and pump strikes," Horrell said. "Even with his off-speed stuff he was throwing strikes and had a low pitch count.
"That last inning he got the top of the order up there and they gave him a little bit of trouble. It was good to get six strong innings out of him."
Blake Keasler came in to pitch the final inning, giving up and initial walk before inducing a double play and getting a strikeout to end the game.
For New Madrid County, who had six hits on the night, Ross Carter and Eric Holloway both batted 2 for 3 with Holloway contributing a double.
The teams two runs both came in the sixth as lead off hitters Chris Pavy and Mason Kellams started the inning with a single and a double, respectively. Kellams' double brought Pavy home from first base before being driven home himself on Holloway's double.
New Madrid County looked to added to their rally in the inning with runners on second and third with one out, but a fly out to right and a ground out to second ended the inning.
"Offensively we're just struggling," New Madrid County coach Kevin Lyons said. "We've struggled for two weeks now. We really thought that would be one of our stronger points, but we just can't seem to put more than two hits together.
"Somebody is just going to have to step up and get a big hit somewhere and maybe get us going, but we're hurting right now."
Unfortunately for Lyons, New Madrid County's luck didn't get much better in the second game of the doubleheader as they fell to Chaffee 8-2.
Earning the win on the mound, Andrew Dooley allowed five hits and walked two while striking out nine.
For the Squids, Walker and Heisserer had three hits apiece while Keasler and Davie each had two. Walker and Keasler both had a pair of doubles.
For New Madrid County, Caden Robbins went 2 for 3 at the plate with Carter hitting a double.
Chaffee improves to 15-1 with the sweep while New Madrid County drops to 2-6.
NMC 000 002 0 - 2
Chaffee 500 121 x - 9
WP -- Cody Payne. LP -- Mason Kellams. 2B -- (N) Mason Kellams, Eric Holloway; (C) Cody Heisserer, Nolan Urhahn.