LINDEN – Marengo Academy (11-3) withstood a late rally from Patrician for a 9-6 win in an afternoon tilt at Scott Park Wednesday.
Marengo led 6-1 in the top of the fifth when Brantley Ward stroked a leadoff single to start a Saint rally. Three batters later, Carson Jimerson reached on an error with two outs. Jordan Brownlee followed with a two-run single to cut the deficit to 6-3. Marengo stretched the lead back out in the bottom of the frame as Cody Cobb stroked a two-run homer that also plated Dalton Daniels for the 8-3 lead.
Undaunted, Patrician rallied again in the sixth. Matthew Newton drew a one-out walk and gave way to his younger brother Stone Newton as a courtesy runner. Morgan Graham followed with an infield single before Ward dropped down a bunt single to load the bases. Two batters later, Lee McBride ripped a single to plate Netwon. A dropped fly ball off the bat of Jimerson allowed Graham and Ward to score to cut it to 8-6.
Marengo added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth as Weldon Aydelott doubled before stealing third. He later scored on a grounder by Brad Collins.
“Weldon Aydelott picked up and stole third base,” Marengo coach Woodie Beck said. “A hit to the right side gets him in when he does that. That was big for us.”Patrician took the lead out of the gate as Brownlee singled in the top of the first before scoring on a Blake Reid basehit. Marengo responded in the home half of the inning with a Davis Petrey leadoff single. He later scored on an Aydelott sacrifice fly to tie the game. Jacob Beck doubled and scored on a passed ball. The Longhorns added to the lead in the second when Cody Cobb doubled, moved to third on a passed ball and scored on the back end of a delayed steal. John Parker Brock followed suit by scoring on the back end of a subsequent delayed steal attempt to move the lead to 4-1. Petrey singled and then scored on an Aydelott single for the 5-1 advantage. Jacob Beck singled in the fourth and made use of the delayed steal to score from third for the 6-1 lead.
“Our guys did a great job of reading their pitcher. They picked up on him well and they did a great job of reading the pitcher,” Beck said.
Despite the nine-run day, Marengo stranded at least one runner in every inning and left a total of nine on base in the game.
“We’ve got to start producing runs. The last few games, we’ve left runners on base and it’s going to hurt us in the long run if we don’t start producing runs,” Beck said. “We’ve got to do a better job when we get runners in scoring position of getting them in.”
The Longhorns saw starting pitcher David Dunn leave for precautionary reasons after one inning of work and turned to Collins to steady the ship.
“He come in after the first inning and said he felt it. We felt better safe than sorry. We want him (out there) now, but we would rather him heal and get well and have him in the end. I think it’s going to take a lot of rehab and therapy, but I think he’s going to be okay,” Beck said of Dunn, who missed the last three weeks with a hamstring injury. “Brad came in and did a real good job. He came in and his fastball and his curveball had good command today. I was proud of the way Brad threw.”
Collins worked five innings and struck out seven for the win. Petrey closed it, striking out two in one inning of work for the save.
Marengo travels to Macon-East Montgomery this weekend for tournament play.
“We’re excited about going. Our kids are all excited about going to Macon-East. We’ve won it the last three years I think,” Beck said. “We’ll see some teams that we don’t see in our area and they’re excited to play them.”