Saturday April 14 the Centralia Panthers baseball team hosted the Highland Cougars and the Clark County Indians for blustery day of baseball.
Centralia beat Clark County 11-4 and lost to Highland, 3-2.
“We just play baseball,” said Clark County Head Coach Jerry Jerome when asked what his game-plan for Centralia had been. “We didn’t hit the ball very well, we didn’t field the ball very well.”
Without those, Jerome said afterward, “it gets tough.” He said their left-hand starter, Tanner Elam, did ‘fine for somebody who has only pitched two innings this season. But we had five errors and you’re not going to win ball games with five errors. . . It’s just baseball.”
He credited Centralia’s effort for the victory though.
“Centralia hit the ball, they had good pitching and put the ball in play. They played well today.”
Grant Planch, the third pitcher Jerome put in against Centralia was the one who slowed the Panther hitting spree and made it a seven-inning game. “Grant’s a catcher, and he’s got a curve ball,” Jerome said. “He’s got a different arm-slot, that almost side-arm delivery that can off balance batters.”
One Panther player said Clark County’s first two pitchers threw nothing but fastballs, while Planch had some variety and that was what made the difference.
“The third guy, he was pretty good,” agreed Panthers Head Coach Michael Rodgers afterward.
“We got guys on base,” said Rodgers when asked how they beat the Indians, “that’s something we’re starting to do pretty well this
season. And when we do, we’ve got guys putting the ball in play.”
He also complimented Evan Stidham, his starting pitcher. “He did a really good job of getting ahead of batters and challenging everyone. Change, curve, fastball, he threw it.
“Everyone, he said of Centralia’s key, six-run third inning which put Centralia up 7-0 at the top of the fourth. “Kaiden Davenport, Clayton Simkins, did a great job of running the bases. Caden Vanskike, he was on a lot for us too.”
In their second game of the day, Centralia lost to visiting Highland, 3-2.
For more, see the April 18 edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.