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Johnson County wins 12-2 in five-inning game against Hampton

The Longhorns finally found their enthusiasm playing against the Hampton Bulldogs Thursday night. In one of their best outcomes of the season, Johnson County ended up on top 12-2 in a five-inning game. Harley Reece put up one of his best overall performances both defensively on the mound and offensively at bat. Most notably Reece landed a huge two run homer after already batting in two runners earlier in the game and pitched all five innings, with four Bulldog Strikeouts.
Reece didn’t attribute his success to any particular change in his strategy but just an overall sense of determination. “This is the first game I’ve pitched all the way through, but I felt it went pretty well. I just came out there and did the best I could. At the plate I went out there to hit the ball. The only real change was that I scooted up to the box a little bit and tried to stay to the ball.”
Yet Reece was not the only Longhorn to be on top of his game. Daniel Helm continued to be an offensive force for Johnson County landing two big hits, while shortstop Judd Hammons landed two doubles. Added to those advances was a double from Jacob Henson, as well as drives by Andy Stout and Ryan Smith. In all, the Longhorns were able to take base twelve times from hits.
The Bulldogs were not without contact of their own, making seven hits during the game, but were repeatedly thwarted by the Longhorn’s defense. Despite advancing several times, Hampton was limited to a single run in the second and fifth innings.
Johnson County made their biggest gains in the second inning, with six runners working their way across home plate. Dusty Stout, Daniel Helm, Andy Stout, and Judd Hammons were all able to make two runs in addition to those picked up by Harley Reece, Jacob Henson, and Harley Stout. The Longhorns were successful again in the fourth and fifth innings, picking up three more runs in each.
The Bulldogs pushed back in the fifth inning, gaining one more run on the scoreboard, but the effort was simply too little too late. After receiving their final out in the fifth inning officials called the game thanks to Johnson County’s ten point lead.
For Coach Pete Pavusek, the energy and drive that the Longhorn’s showed throughout the evening was exactly what has been missing in several recent games, including the loss against Sullivan East earlier in the week. “We made a few adjustments hitting tonight, but I don’t really think we did anything different. We just had a little more enthusiasm, a little more excitement than we did against East. I don’t know if it was just the conditions, or where we were at, but it was different day, and that’s just baseball. We struggled in the first inning, made some adjustments in the box, moved up a little bit. We went from seeing someone throw hard last night to not so hard tonight, and we had to adjust a little bit. We had to look to hit the opposite way, look to hit down on the ball, not lift it so much, and we did that. We made the adjustments and the ultimate result was twelve runs,” Pavusek said.