By Tim Chambers
Tomahawk Sports Editor
“We’re not a bad baseball team when we get good pitching and don’t make mistakes, Today we did both well.” Head coach Pete Pavusek Sullivan Central didn’t encounter Goliath in Mountain City, but they did wake up a sleeping giant. Johnson County broke loose for nine runs in the fourth inning that vaulted them to a 16-5 Three Rivers Conference victory. It was the first win of the season for the Horns who are currently 1-4 but have dropped some close games. Head coach Pete Pavusek was pleased after watching his squad finally put all the necessary pieces in place.
“We’re not a bad baseball team when we get good pitching and don’t make mistakes,” said Pavusek. “Today we did both well. The nine-run inning was something that we’ve needed. Today’s win was a confidence booster. I felt like we could have won over there had we eliminated our mistakes.”
The Cougars picked back up from where they left off from the previous day by taking a 2-0 lead in the first after stringing together four base hits. They added a solo run in the second inning on a run-scoring base hit by M. Long to go up 3-0. Johnson County would finally dent the scoreboard in the bottom half. Josh Tierney, Weston Throop, Bud Icenhour, Shane Greer and Reece Stout all had singles that enabled them to pull closer at 3-2.
The Cougars kept applying the pressure by extending their lead at 5-2 in the third, but the Horns would not be denied. They busted loose for five runs in the third inning that would allow them to move in front 7-5.Petie Pavusek and Tierney started the onslaught with back-to-back singles followed by Throop and Steven Osborne getting hit by a pitch to score one. Greer continued to swing a hot bat by ripping a base hit as did Reece Stout who lined one to center.
The Longhorns would blow in the game wide open in the fourth by sending a baker’s dozen to the plate that produced nine more runs. They took advantage of four walks, and an error sandwiched in between base hits from Greer, Pavusek, and Jonathan Arnold to go up 16-5. Central got a pair of runners on in the fifth, but Icenhour would work out of the jam allowing the Longhorns to walk away with the win. Icenhour hurled all five innings to pick up the win. He also went 1-for-3 at the plate with an RBI and two runs scored. Johnson County banged out 15 hits as every starter hit safely.
Greer topped the hit parade going 4-for-4 with two RBI’s. Jayden Joiner drove in two runs and went 1-for-3. Tierney had a big day going 3-for-4 with two RBI’s and three runs scored.Pavusek and Stout went 2-for-3 each. Arnold reached base four times and was 1-for-1 with four runs scored. Throop added a base hit and two RBI’s while Stephen Osborne had another to drive in a run. Long, Fields and Grayer provided two hits apiece for Sullivan Central.
Sullivan Cen. 212 00 – 5 12 4
Johnson Co. 025 9x – 16 15 1
Lucas, Winstead (3), Akard (4) and Mumpower. Icenhour and Pavusek.