RIPLEY – Ripley High senior Preston Baldwin mashed a double down the line in left field in the bottom of the sixth to plate XX and XX as the Vikings rolled to a 3-1 victory over Riverside in front of a large crowd at Ray Swisher Field at Viking Park Monday night. The two out hit helped to end a losing streak that has haunted the Vikings since March 30.
"After Riverside called timeout, Coach Casto told me to put one down the line and get the runs home and I managed to get it done," said Baldwin.
Beyond Baldwin's heroics at the plate, Ripley's freshman hurler Logan McCoy locked into a pitching duel with Riverside's super sophomore Brady Wilkinson and managed to out duel the Warrior's talented fireballer.
"I have to give credit to our defense. They made plays all night and everything was working for me with the exception of my change-up," said McCoy.
The Vikings have a stable of young arms who have tasted varsity action this season, bidding well for the future of Ripley baseball. McCoy has proven through excellent work against Parkersburg and Riverside that he will be a large part of that future success.
It is worthy of mentioning that Wilkinson threw well for the Warriors on this night and had to chance to face Ripley freshman Aaron Wilkinson, his first cousin. The pinch hit at bat resulted in a sharp single to center from the young Viking slugger.
"This was a huge win for us. We have been snake bit for a long while and it was good to see us play well tonight. Logan pitched an outstanding game for us and we really needed that from him. He came in and threw well for us last week at Parkersburg and you can see it starting to click from him," said Viking Coach Shane Casto.
"We got great pitching, timely hitting, got bunts down and made some plays in the field. Preston came up big for us in the sixth when we needed it and I couldn't be more proud of these guys. Their pitcher (Wilkinson) had the best stuff we have seen all year and our guys came ready to play and answered the challenge," added Casto.
In the hitting department, Baldwin had a double and two RBIs, Tyler pittenger had a double and Christopher Jordan, Jonny Stepp and Aaron Wilkinson all singled.
For Riverside, Derik Chestnut, Tyler Hall, Chaz Davis, Trevor Rumberg and Holden McMichel all singled. Chestnut had an RBI.
On the hill, McCoy went seven innings and gave up just an earned run on five hits and four strikeouts. He walked zero.
For Riverside, Brady Wilkinson went six innings and gave up three earned runs on six hits while walking four and fanning six Vikings. Ripley travels to Capital High tonight.
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