The Hannibal High School Pirates baseball team opened its conference season with a 6-2 win against the Moberly Spartans on Tuesday night.
The Hannibal High School Pirates baseball team opened its conference season with a 6-2 win against the Moberly Spartans on Tuesday night. Hannibal (3-3) was looking to get the win after coming off a couple of losses in the Troy tournament.Danny Colborn started the game off with an infield hit to the pitcher. Chase Kirby drove in Colborn with an RBI single up the middle. Will Whitaker, who started at pitcher for the Pirates, went three innings, allowing zero runs on one hit, striking out five, and walking one. “I did alright tonight. I could have gone a little longer, but I feel alright. I think it’s good for us to get this win tonight you know, on our way to a conference championship,” Whitaker said. The Pirates had a chance in the second inning to score more runs, however, the rally was cut short by a fielder’s choice and when a Pirate runner was caught stealing third base. Colborn led off the third inning with a walk and once again, Kirby had an RBI single up the middle to bring Colborn in for a 2-0 lead. Adam Baxter took over on the mound in the bottom of the fourth facing five batters and gave up a run on an error. Kirby started off the fifth inning with a double down the third base line. The Pirates were able to put together a bases-loaded situation, however, they came up empty handed leaving all three runners stranded. The seventh inning once again saw the Pirates have a string of hits and were able to score two more runs from Mason Tharp RBI single and from Baxter giving the Pirates a 6-1 lead. Baxter faced four batters in the bottom of the seventh inning giving up one run off of an error. A huge out was when Baxter picked the runner off of first base to give the Pirates the first out. Gabe Worthington ended the game by catching a pop fly. Baxter led the Pirates to a 6-2 win in the Pirates' first conference game of the season. “I feel like I was pretty solid. I closed it out pretty good. I could have done a little bit better, but just how it goes sometimes,” said Baxter, who pitched four innings allowing five hits, two runs, struck out five, and walked two. Hannibal ended the night with 11 hits. Kirby went 3-4 on the night while, Drake Dudley and Baxter each had a pair. Whitaker, Colborn, Gary Culp, and the Tharp each had one . Coach Ian Hatton was impressed with his team's performance. “Any conference win is a good win," he said. "We know that none of these games are going to be easy no matter who the opponent is and coming off of two losses and end up playing the way we did tonight, especially through some tough situations, it shows a lot about our team. We struggled at the plate a little bit, but we got some runs when we needed them. We’re going to turn things around for the positive as far as hitting, but it is nice to get a conference win, especially when our end goal is a conference championship.”