BLANCHESTER — Cole Ficke was hitting under .100 in non-league games this season.
All that went away with one swing of the bat in Wednesday’s Division II sectional tournament game against Monroe at Bott Field.
Ficke homered to left field to lead off the 10th inning to lift Blanchester to a 5-4 win over Monroe.
“I am so happy for Cole to experience that game-winning home run,” BHS coach Aaron Lawson said. “He will never forget that moment.”
The win advances the Wildcats to Thursday’s game at No. 3 seed Taylor. First pitch is set for 5 p.m.
Ficke had just one hit in 24 non-league games going in to Wednesday’s contest. He finished 2-for-3, with two walks, two runs scored and two RBI.
“That is why we play the game,” said Lawson.
Blanchester battled back from a 4-0 deficit. Adam Frump and Reagan Burch drove in runs as the ‘Cats tied the game through six innings.
After a rough start, Brody Rice battled his way through 6.2 innings of pitching. He struck out 12 and gave up just four hits.
Frump, Zach West and Trenton Czaika also pitched.
Czaika made Ficke’s homer possible by getting the third out in the top of the 10th after Monroe had loaded the bases.
“I am so proud of this team for giving it all they had,” Lawson said. “They laid all they had on the line for 10 innings.”
May 19, 2021
@Bott Field, BHS
Blanchester 5 Monroe 4
(5) BLANCHESTER (ab-r-h-rbi) Burch 5-0-3-1 West 5-0-0-0 Czaika 5-0-1-0 Rice 5-0-1-0 Hamm 5-1-2-0 Wymer 5-1-0-0 Sipple 4-1-1-0 Frump 4-0-2-1 C. Ficke 3-2-2-2 Curless 0-0-0-0 TOTALS 41-5-12-4
2B: C. Ficke, Sipple
HR: C. Ficke