AMERICAN LEGION BASEBALL
Waverly Post 142 Shockers 8, Circleville Post 134 Panthers 7
Behind an amazing triple play in the top half of the seventh frame, followed by a game-winning two-RBI base knock by Luke Lindamood with the bases loaded, the Waverly Post 142 Shockers’ baseball program was able to claim an 8-7 victory over the Circleville Post 134 Panthers’ baseball program on Wednesday evening in Waverly.
After trading counterpunches through the opening quartet of innings, Waverly found itself in front by a tight 6-5 margin as an RBI groundout by Kannon Pack, a sacrifice fly by Cody Lewis, an RBI double by Talon Osborne, and RBI singles by Tanner Cunningham and Marty Knittel, which accounted for three runs on their own, allowed Post 142 to emerge with the advantage. But when a two-RBI single allowed Circleville to take the lead on the seventh lead change of the contest, Waverly had to, again, dig deep in order to make a rally.
That rally got going in full swing in the top half of the seventh inning, when Waverly’s defense stepped up in a huge way to turn the contest on its heels.
After a pair of singles by Post 134, Circleville attempted to move the runners over on a bunt, but Lindamood, who has shown off quick reactions behind the plate throughout 2018, made a huge catch after the ball was popped up in the air. The senior-to-be then fired to first to gun a runner down, and Lewis, with the lead runner heading toward third base, made the easy throw to turn the rare triple play. By the time it was all over, Waverly had completely erased a scenario where Circleville had runners on first and second base with nobody out, and, in addition to that, had a chance to win the affair in the bottom of the seventh frame.
“Turning the triple play in the seventh inning was a game changer,” Post 142 head coach Jonathan Teeters said. “We gambled with our bunt coverage, and this time, it worked. All of our guys fielded their positions and knew what to do.”
With Post 142 full of life, the bottom of the inning proved to be even more fruitful than the top of it. When walks by Knittel and Pack put runners on first and second, Cunningham, with one gone, hit a fly ball that was dropped in the outfield, which allowed Waverly to load the bases with just one out.
In a fitting manner, Lindamood, the next batter up, wasted little time getting the celebration started. The standout two-sport athlete at Minford launched a line drive to center field to score both Knittel and Pack as Post 142 took home a critical victory over Post 134 in a wild fashion from start to finish.
“Man, what a game,” Teeters said. “I told our guys that this game was going to be a heavyweight boxing match and we had to land more punches, and thankfully we landed the last one.”
For the contest, Lindamood and Osborne led the charge at the dish by going 2-for-3 with two RBI and a walk and 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored in the contest. Cunningham (1-for-4, two RBI) also joined the multi-RBI parade, while Pack (1-for-3, walk, stolen base, RBI, two runs scored), Knittel (1-for-2, two walks, RBI), Jalen Miller (1-for-3, two runs scored), and Ian Gillen (1-for-4, run scored) all contributed in the lineup. Nate Keiser (two runs scored) and Cody Lewis (RBI, walk) all added to the strong effort for Post 142 in the win.
“Our team 1-9 battled at the plate. We didn’t give away any at bats. I am so proud of our team. This is a resilient group of guys. They are hungry to get better and willing to do the work to get there.”
With the victory, Waverly moved to 17-8 overall and 6-3 in the South Central Ohio League (SCOL). They will make the return trip to Circleville tomorrow, where Post 134 awaits a rematch at 6 p.m.