Indy hands Myers Park first loss of the season

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On Tuesday night the Independence Patriots ended the league leading Myers Park Mustangs’ six-game win streak as they handed the previously unbeaten Mustangs their first loss of the season in a rain shortened baseball game at Independence High School.

In the top of the second inning Myers Park’s lead off hitter hit a single to right field. With the next batter up the runner tried to steal second but was thrown out by Indy senior catcher Cooper Fandel, who made a near perfect throw to second base well ahead of the runner. The Mustangs’ batters flied out ending the inning with no score.

Indy got on the board first scoring two runs in the bottom of the third inning. Joey Granger led off for the Patriots and reached first base on a bunt and later stole second. Nate Brown followed and hit a shot that the Myers Park’s second baseman was unable to handle. Brown beat the throw to first, and Granger moved to third. Noah Howie was up next and was called out on the infield fly rule after hitting a high pop up to the second baseman. With one out Cooper Fandel stepped to the plate and hit a single to right field scoring Granger from third giving Indy a 1-0 lead. With Nate Brown on third and one out, senior Noah Haislip came to the plate and laid down a sacrifice bunt down the first base line scoring Brown from third to give Indy a 2-0 lead at the end of three innings.

Indy’s Noah Haislip bunts in a runner in Indy’s win over Myers Park.
[/media-credit] Indy’s Noah Haislip bunts in a runner in Indy’s win over Myers Park.

The Mustangs came fighting back in the top of the fourth. Myers Park hit a grounder to the right side of the mound. Indy’s Nick Melton fielded the grounder and made a throwing error to first moving the runner to third base. Melton struck out the next hitter; however, the Mustangs batter hit a single scoring the runner from third. With one run in, a runner on first, and only one out, Indy turned a big double play. Melton fielded a hard grounder back to the mound. Melton threw to Mangum who stepped on second for the out. Mangum fired the ball to Giorgio at first for the third out ending the inning with Indy on top 2-1.

Going into the bottom of the fifth inning the umpires stopped the game at 7:40 p.m. due to lightning. After clearing the stands and the playing field, the rain came. At 9:00 p.m. it was still raining and lightning, and the radar didn’t show any let up in the weather. The chief umpire called the game. Since Myers Park had five at bats it was ruled an official game, and Indy got the 2-1 victory.

Senior left hander Nick Melton earned the win for the Patriots allowing one run on four hits, one walk and striking out six Mustangs batters.

The Patriots improved to 6-4 overall and 3-2 in conference play.

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