BLANCHESTER — After a torrid start to the season, Blanchester’s Brody Rice was in a bit of a slump. He had just two hits in his last eight at-bats.
The senior slugger ended that dry spell in fine fashion Monday, driving in the game-winning run in the ninth inning as BHS defeated Clermont Northeastern 5-4.
The SBAAC National Division victory at Bott Field gives BHS a 6-1 overall mark and a 3-0 record in the division.
CNE is 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the National.
“We really found out what we are made of (in this game),” BHS coach Aaron Lawson said. “We gave them the lead with three errors in the sixth and seventh (innings).”
Down to their last out, the Wildcats tied the game at 4-4 when Reagan Burch singled in Adam Frump. James Wymer had a big pinch-hit for the ‘Cats earlier in the inning.
In the ninth, Carson Curless walked, went to second on Burch’s bunt single. After Trenton Czaika was walked to load the bases, Rice delivered the game-winner with a single to left.
“We still need to clean up our infield play and pitching,” Lawson said. “We are falling behind too many guys, not being consistent in our delivery.”
Rice and Adam Frump struck out 14 batters and gave up just one earned run but combined to walk seven. Rice gains the win in relief.
April 5, 2021
@Bott Field, BHS
Blanchester 5, Clermont NE 4
(5) BLANCHESTER (ab-r-h-rbi) Burch 4-1-3-1 Czaika 3-1-1-0 Rice 3-1-1-1 C. Ficke 1-0-0-1 West 3-0-0-0 Frump 2-1-0-0 Hamm 4-0-0-0 Sipple 3-0-0-0 Wymer 1-0-1-0 Curless 2-1-0-0 TOTALS 26-5-6-3
SB: Burch 2, Czaika, C. Ficke, Rice