Sean McGuire reached base three times, scored twice, and pitched 6 strong innings to enable Hillcrest to gain a split of their doubleheader at West Central Friday evening. Collin Erickson went 3 for 3 including a triple, and Jake Steinle hit an RBI triple to add offensive support in the Comets 6-2 victory. The first game went to West Central 10-4 as Ross Anderson went 2 for 3 with 3 runs scored on a night when a new scoreboard was dedicated in his father's memory, former WCA activities director Pat Anderson.
The Comets jumped off to an early 3-0 lead as Nick Foss singled, Reggie Undseth doubled, and Troy Tonneson's 2-out single plated both runners in the first inning. Jake Steinle doubled and scored on Erickson's sacrifice fly in the 2nd inning. The Comet bats were silent until the 7th when Erickson walked, McGuire singled, and Erickson scored when the Knights misplayed an inadvertent infield fly off the bat of Undseth.
In the nightcap, the Knights took an early 2-0 lead, but the Comets came storming back, tying the game in the 3rd. McGuire walked, stole second, and advanced to third on a single by Foss, McGuire scored on Sam Ihrke's sacrifice fly, and Foss scored on Tonneson's single. Hillcrest took the lead in the 4th when Erickson led off with a triple and scored on Sam Isaac's RBI single.
The Comets added two insurance runs in the 5th. Ihrke led off with a single and came around to score on Steinle's triple. Erickson's third hit of the game scored Steinle to make it 5-2. A final run was added in the top of the 6th when McGuire singled, stole 2nd, and scored on Undseth's sacrifice fly. The game was called on account of darkness after 6 innings.
Coach Undseth: "Sean carried us on the mound the second game, and it was good to see Collin Erickson back in the line-up banging out 3 hits for us. It was good to salvage one game. We had a nice start in the first game, but then their bats got zeroed in and they hit the ball pretty hard in the middle innings. It was a revelation to see Jake Steinle come in and throw two scoreless innings, pitching out of a bases-loaded jam in the 5th and setting them down in the last inning as well.
Hillcrest will return home to host Brandon-Evansville on Monday at 5:00 at Legion Field.