Claremore Daily Progress

Sports

June 30, 2012

2A Zebras get ‘offensive’ with Skiatook

Hayden Jones delivers 'clutch hit' for Claremore

PRYOR — Claremore 2A head baseball coach Derek Short witnessed a ‘different team’ in the opening round of the American Legion State Tournament Friday afternoon in Pryor.

“It’s amazing what happens when you hit the baseball,” Short said.

Short’s Zebras pounded the baseball and produced a 9-3 win over Skiatook.

The Zebra offense tallied nine runs on 10 hits despite leaving 13 runners on base.

Trailing 1-0 after the first inning, the Zebra bats came to life in the top half of the second inning.

Hayden Jones’ RBI-single to deep right field plated courtesy runner Justin Ragsdale to tie the game at 1-1 and Brady Wells put Claremore ahead 2-1 with a groundout that drove in Dakota Rader.

The Zebra offense gave starting pitcher Chris Dotson a comfortable cushion on the mound, allowing the sophomore right-hander to dominate in the second and third innings.

Dotson collected three of his eight strikeouts during those two scoreless innings.

In the top half of the fourth, the Zebras extended their lead to 6-1.

A lead-off single by Wells set up Claremore’s two-out rally.

After Shawn Gordon’s sacrifice bunt moved Wells to second base and Spencer Walden’s groundout advanced Wells to third base, the Claremore designated hitter scored on Nathan Hammack’s infield hit that trickled off the glove of the Skiatook shortstop.

Leading 3-1, Cameron Smith smoked an RBI-double to the right-field corner to plate Hammack and advance courtesy runner Taylor Stephens to third base.

Three straight walks and a passed ball allowed Stephens and Smith to cross home plate and extend the Zebras lead to 6-1.

Claremore continued its offensive explosion in the top of the sixth with another two-out rally.

RBI-singles by Gordon and Walden scored Rader and Wells, who both reached base on a walk, to make 8-1 in favor of the Zebras.

Skiatook, however, finally got on the board in bottom of the sixth, scoring two runs on no hits. Both of the Bulldogs runs were unearned as Dotson walked Wilson and Miller before retiring the next three in order.

Claremore added its last run in the top of the seventh as Dotson drove in Stephens, who reached base on Doug Thompson’s standup double to right field.

Dotson’s long fly ball to center field for the second out allowed Stephens to tag up at third and race in for the 9-3 lead.

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