After earning a share of this season’s South Central Association championship, the Houston High School baseball team still had several nonconference games on the schedule before playing in the Class 3 District 9 Tournament.

One of those contests took place Saturday at Tiger Field in Houston, as the host squad beat county rival Licking, 5-2.

The victory avenged a loss in the second game of the season, one of only two suffered by the Tigers so far.

Houston struck early, tallying 3 runs in the bottom of the first inning.

The Tigers loaded the bases with 1 out in the frame with a rally including singles by sophomore center fielder Ryan Wolfe and senior catcher Cody Allen, and senior shortstop Alex Castleman being hit by a pitch from Licking freshman starter Silas Antle. Houston then scored on a sacrifice fly by senior Trevor Mitchell and RBI singles by sophomores Danny Venable and Colton Stewart.

Trevor greeted

HHS senior Trevor Mitchell is greeted by teammates after driving in a run with a sacrifice fly during the first inning of the Tigers’ win over Licking Saturday at Tiger Field.

The Tigers added a run in the third inning when Venable double to right field and ended up scoring on an error. Houston then went ahead 5-0 in the fourth frame when Allen smacked an RBI single to left field.

The visiting Wildcats (8-8 after the loss) reduced the deficit with RBI singles in both the sixth and seventh innings.

Houston’s infield came up big with rally-stopping double plays in top of the third and seventh frames. The first began when sophomore pitcher Garyn Hall snagged a sharp come-backer and tossed the ball to Castleman at second base, who then relayed it to Stewart at first. The second was a classic 6-4-3 version, with Castleman, Venable and Stewart hooking up for the play.

Castleman had a whopping 7 chances at short in the contest.

Colton hits

HHS sophomore Colton Stewart connects for an RBI single during the first inning of the Tigers’ win over Licking Saturday at Tiger Field.

The Tigers notched 9 hits, with Wolfe, Allen and Venable getting 2 apiece.

Hall went the distance to record the win on the mound, allowing 6 hits while striking out 5 and walking only 1. Antle took the loss for Licking, allowing 8 hits and 4 earned runs in 5 innings of work, while fanning 2 and walking 3.

Houston (14-2, 6-1 SCA through Saturday) is scheduled to take on a 20-2 Hartville squad at 4:30 p.m. Monday at Tiger Field.

 

Staff writer

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Doug Davison is a writer, photographer and newsroom assistant for the Houston Herald. Email him at ddavison@houstonherald.com.

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