Claremore Daily Progress

March 26, 2013

‘Red Storm’

Keizor, No. 1 Verdigris crush Sequoyah

Tim Ritter
Sports Editor

VERDIGRIS — Together Everyone Achieves More.

With the No. 1-ranked Verdigris Cardinals, every victory and every state championship the past two years has been credited to superb ‘teamwork’.

On Monday evening, Mitch Hammack hurled a three-hitter and Riley Keizor delivered an RBI-triple in the bottom of the fourth inning to send the Cardinals past Claremore Sequoyah, 11-2 in Will Rogers Conference action.

The victory improved Verdigris to 11-1 on the year and 3-0 in conference.

The Cardinals, who entered the series with Sequoyah fresh off a 3-1 outing in Arizona over Spring Break, got to Eagles’ starting pitcher Logan Tacker early and often.

Ryan Skalnik’s RBI-single to left field in the bottom of the first followed by Hammack’s RBI-single gave the Cardinals a 2-0 advantage.

The lead grew to 3-0 in the bottom of the second on Kale Keith’s RBI-single off the glove of Sequoyah shortstop McKaine Foster.

Verdigris — playing without senior shortstop/pitcher Blake Battenfield — scored in six of the seven innings and built an 8-0 cushion for Hammack.

The 5-foot-11, 220-pound right-handed pitcher (Hammack) held Sequoyah without a hit until the top of the third inning.

Sequoyah second baseman Tanner Helm, who finished with two singles, got the Eagles’ first hit — a single to left-center field in the third.

Sequoyah, however, was unable to capitalize, leaving Helm stranded on second base.

Ryan Hurd’s 2-run triple to right-center field in the bottom half of the third increased the Cardinals’ lead to 5-0.

Then, in the bottom of the fourth, the Cardinals used an RBI-triple by Keizor and an RBI-single by Blake Stone to go up 8-0.

Sequoyah answered with a pair of runs in the sixth, despite trailing 9-0.

Yance McGill plated Tacker on an RBI-single to right-center field, and Helm manufactured a run-scoring opportunity with an RBI-single to cut the deficit to 9-2.

Verdigris closed the door in the bottom half of the sixth with Tanner Smith and Skalnik driving in the final two runs to seal the win.