Freeburg Tops Salem for TwoThe Salem Southwest Wildcats needed one win Friday night to cement themselves as a two-seed in the upcoming district tournament. But Freeburg came into Salem and left with a sweep of the twin bill.
Salem and Freeburg combined for twenty hits and nineteen runs in Freeburg's 11-8 win in the opener. The game was a long relief showing by Tristan Holmes who threw three-and-a-third innings allowing two runs on four hits. TJ Alberson started and suffered the loss for Salem, walking five and giving up three hits. Five runs were charged to the 'Cats starter. Nick Conklin also pitched, giving up four runs in just two-thirds of an inning.
Salem's bats were busy in the opener, as Conklin went 3-4 with a pair of doubles and two runs scored. Wyatt McGhee and Zach Tate each went 2-4 and scored a combined four runs. Evan Maxey and Tristan Holmes both had doubles in the loss.
Evan Maxey went the distance in the nightcap, surrendering just four hits as Salem lost 3-0. Maxey struck out six and walked five in the outing, keeping Freeburg off-balance with a nasty breaking ball. But the Wildcats only had four hits themselves, and couldn't get a run across. Jared Banning led Salem by going 2-3 with a double. Alberson also had a double and Tate singled.
Salem Head Coach Brian Lipe said Maxey did his job and kept the team in the game, but that the timely hits were not there.
"[Maxey] did a nice job of keeping us in the ballgame. We ran into a buzzsaw in the kid that threw against us. We didn't have a clue. We
had four hits. We've swung the bat better."
A bright spot from Lipe's perspective was the adjustment made by Jared Banning, who went 0-4 in the first game before his two-hit performance.
"In the first game, he came in and said, 'Coach, I don't think you should be [designated hit]ing me because I'm awful.' So we came out and hit some whiffle balls. We didn't work on anything, but his confidence was better and he went out and hit the baseball well."
Salem is 15-6 on the summer now with three losses in the district. The Wildcats host Waterloo Gibault on Sunday for a double header starting at 1pm.
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