In what might have been the battle of the schools with two of the longest names in the area, when Wellsville-Middletown varsity baseball coach Earl Burton looked across his home diamond last Friday while Community R-6 was warming up it must've brought back some not so distant memories.
After all, it wasn't that long ago that this years group of seniors for the Tigers made a playoff run that went all the way to the state title game with a roster loaded with underclassmen that was brimming with talent that had no sense of the pressure that comes with that type of prosperity. That being said, while the Trojans are still finding their way at this point, Wellsville-Middletown doesn't need directions to the next intersection in the least. Instead, this squad is already starting to hit on all cylinders.
In fact, the Tigers are playing so well even fatigue couldn't keep them down as they absolutely couldn't be contained in this one on their way to winning 13-3.
"This was the fourth game in four days. We went 3-1 during this stretch and I am very proud of the team," said Earl Burton. "It seems the players we're comfortable with the schedule and looked forward to being tested all week. Our schedule doesn’t get any easier this coming week with three games in four days, but all teams are in the same situation with the early rain outs. It actually helps us build depth, especially with our pitching."
Originally this game was slated for April 11th, but whenever it was played Wellsville-Middletown had several intangibles working in its favor that would've been helpful regardless. This includes making zero errors on defense behind a pitching effort by Ben Burton that included his fourth victory of the season after allowing just one earned run on two hits and a walk with 11 strikeouts.
"The Tigers had seven players that collected hits (and) eight players with at least one RBI," said Earl Burton. "Our offense seems to be getting their feet under them. The team hit well this evening. This was Ben’s first earned run of the season."
Wellsville-Middletown, 6-1 overall, was at Elsberry on Monday and travels to North Shelby on Wednesday.