Casey scores 13 in fourth to beat Burgin

May 21, 2004|MIKE MARSEE

BURGIN - It was a blowout bigger than any Casey County had enjoyed in weeks, yet it was not what it seemed.

For while Casey was more than happy to close the regular season with a 20-4 victory over Burgin on Thursday night, the Rebels aren't exactly rolling into the postseason in the manner they'd like.

"We're not really playing as a team as much as we did at the beginning of the year," Casey senior Lindsay Wilson said.

As impressive as Casey's second-highest run total of the season might have been, Burgin had as much to do with the high score as Casey did.


The Rebels produced only six hits, and they took advantage of numerous Burgin mistakes in a 13-run fourth inning.

Casey coach Andy Stephens said he wasn't pleased with they way the Rebels have struggled at the plate in recent games, and he said it's a symptom of a greater ailment.

"We've just been inconsistent in about everything we do," Stephens said. "We're just not mentally playing real well right now. Our focus is not good."

Rebels play Danville in district tourney Monday

Still, Stephens said he believes there's time to turn things around before Casey's 45th District Tournament game Monday against Danville.

"I think so; it's just that with this team, I can't get an idea what's going to happen. We've got a lot of distractions that get in the way of our performance," he said.

Wilson said the Rebels still believe they're capable of winning a fourth straight district title.

"Beating Danville is our first priority, but we'd like to win the district because we've won our district three years in a row," she said.

The Bulldogs fell behind 6-0 in the first half-inning, but Burgin coach Matt Grimes said that wasn't nearly as bad as what happened later.

"When I scheduled this game, I knew Casey was a good team that would help us better prepare for the district," Grimes said. "I wasn't really disappointed (in the first inning) because they got two good, solid hits. You can't fault our effort on that when they hit the ball hard.

"But in the fourth inning it was kind of like something you'd see in an upcoming Stephen King movie. It just catches you by surprise like that."

Burgin committed six errors in Casey's big inning, all on the infield. But there were other mistakes as well, such as a fielder's choice play in which there was no throw to retire a runner.

Seventeen batters went to the plate, but only three had hits

Casey sent 17 batters to the plate, but had only three hits. Ellen Hogue had two of them, driving in a total of three runs with two singles, and Amanda Delk had an RBI single.

Casey used more conventional offensive methods to score seven runs in the first two innings. Lesli Grider drove in three runs with a double to start the scoring, and Kelli Patton did the same thing three batters later. Tori Clements opened the second inning with a triple and scored on a groundout by Felicia Luttrell, who had two RBIs.

Michelle Myers drove in Burgin's first run with a first-inning double. The Bulldogs added three runs in the second inning, when they loaded the bases and scored when Meredith Lear drew a walk, Myers was hit by a pitch and Taylor Bottoms hit a sacrifice fly.

"We need to relish the first three innings and throw away the fourth inning," said Grimes, whose Burgin team plays Mercer Monday in the 44th District tourney. "One of the problems we've had is we can't put together a complete ballgame.

"But if you look at where we were last year, we've made a lot of improvements. Our goal at the beginning of the year was to be able to win one game in the district, and time will tell in just a few days if we've done the things we needed to do all spring to make that a reality."

Casey pitchers Kayla Eads and Kayla Buis, pitching in relief of starter Wilson, combined to retire Burgin's last seven batters. Wilson allowed all three Burgin hits.

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