ARCANUM – Arcanum battled back from a 3-0 deficit to defeat Ansonia 6-3 in a Cross County Conference baseball game on Thursday.
Ansonia started strong on Thursday with a run in each of the first three innings.
Jacob Longenecker led off the game with a walk and advanced to second on a sacrifice grounder by Tyler Neal. He then stole third and scored on a passed ball to put Ansonia up 1-0.
Jarvis Thwaits tripled in the second inning and scored on a sacrifice grounder by Reece Stammen to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead.
In the third inning Ethan Fischer had a two-out single, advanced to second on a single by Neal and scored on an error to make it a 3-0 game.
“We started out slow. We started out rough,” Arcanum coach Randy Baker said. “We walked the first batter then a couple passed balls, and they scored. They had a triple there in the second inning. Was leaving the ball up early. Was falling behind in the count. And then we made two errors there in the third and let them have another unearned run.”
Ansonia coach Dustin Hecht was glad to see the strong start, but his team didn’t get the strong finish it needed.
“We started out playing really good,” Hecht said. “We were making great contact at the plate, we were playing great defensively, and we kind of let things get a little bit out of control. One thing led to another, and they climbed right back in. We’ve got to be able to play all the way through and fight through the whole game.”
Arcanum’s first run came in the bottom of the third. Cole Spitler walked, went to second on a grounder by Isaiah Hootman and scored on a sacrifice fly by Evan Atchley.
In the fourth inning the Trojans cut the deficit to 3-2. Lane Byrne tripled and scored on a grounder by Michael Fecker.
The Trojans took their first lead of the game with four runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Cory Ross started the rally with a single and Byrne tripled again to tie the score at 3-3. Fecker then doubled to drive in Byrne and put Arcanum up 4-3.
Arcanum added two insurance runs after Spitler singled, Fecker stole home and Meeks drove a RBI triple into right.
“I thought we battled back,” Baker said. “I thought we started hitting the ball really well there at the end.”
Meeks then took the mound in the seventh inning and retired Ansonia to preserve the win. He pitched one inning, allowing no runs on one hit, no walks and one strikeout.
Atchley pitched the first six innings for Arcanum, allowing one earned run and two unearned runs on eight hits, two walks and five strikeouts to pick up the victory.
“Evan kept us in the game with his pitching,” Stone said. “We was hitting the ball throughout the game. We just was hitting to them early on.”
Caleb Jones pitched five innings for Ansonia, allowing four earned runs on six hits, three walks, one hit batter and three strikeouts. Thwaits pitched one inning, allowing two earned runs on three hits and no walks.
Thwaits led Ansonia’s offense as he was 3-for-3 with a triple and scored a run. Stammen was 2-for-3 with a RBI. Longenecker was 1-for-2 with two walks, two stolen bases and a run. Fischer went 1-for-4 and scored a run. Taylor Brewer and Neal both were 1-for-3.
Byrne was 2-for-3 with two triples, two runs and a RBI for Arcanum. Ross was 2-for-3, stole a base and scored a run. Meeks was 1-for-3 with a triple and a RBI. Fecker was 1-for-3 with a double, a stolen base, a run and two RBIs. Spitler was 1-for-2 with a walk, a stolen base and two runs. Shilt was 1-for-2 with a walk and two stolen base. Atchley was 1-for-4 and drove in a run.
Though his team lost, Hecht sees a squad that is showing signs of improvement.
“Things are definitely moving in the right direction,” he said. “We’ve just got to finish games now. We’re definitely right there.”
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.