Baseball Panthers split rivalry games
MHS squad tops Ennis, but suffers walk-off loss to Hawks
Last week was a mixed bag for the Midlothian Panthers against Ellis County baseball rivals on the road, with a win over Ennis last Tuesday followed by a walk-off loss to Red Oak on Saturday afternoon.
The Panthers opened the week with a 7-2 victory over the Lions as Caden Copeland pitched 6 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits while striking out six.
Kyzer Harrington and Lance Rains both batted 3-for-4 to pace the Panthers, with Harrington tripling and scoring two runs and Rains adding a double and RBI. Nathan Humphreys and Fletcher Newman both finished with a pair of hits.
MHS jumped on top out of the chute as Harrington led off the game with his three-bagger and scored on a passed ball for a quick 1-0 lead. It stayed that way until the fifth inning, when Patrick Hudson drove in a run on a sac fly and Newman singled home a run to make it 3-0, then back-to-back RBI hits by Humphreys and Harrington bumped the lead to 5-0.
Ennis finally got on the board in the bottom of the sixth, but MHS got the runs back in the seventh as Newman scored on a passed ball and Rains doubled in a run.
Copeland left in the seventh having thrown 99 pitches. Jaylon Johnson got the final out.
On Saturday, after Friday’s game was postponed by storms, the Panthers rallied from a seven-run deficit to tie the game, but Red Oak scored the walk-off run on a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch in the bottom of the seventh to hand MHS an 11-10 loss.
After MHS had opened with a 3-0 lead, the Hawks scored the next 10 runs, including seven in the home half of the fourth to build a 10-3 lead.
Back came the Panthers, as Newman tripled in a run and Rains had an RBI single to cut the deficit to five in the top of the fifth. Then in the next frame, a Red Oak error opened the door to a five-run Panther rally to tie the game, the big hits coming on yet another pairing of a Newman triple and Rains single for RBIs each.
But in the seventh, a walk, an error and a walk set the stage for Red Oak’s Vincente Vargas, who worked the count full and then was hit by a pitch, forcing in the game-winning run.
Newman finished 3-for-4 with his two triples, four RBI and two runs scored. Rains was 2-for-4 with two RBI, Tyler Klein added two hits and Harrington and Humphreys each had a double.
Because of the Friday postponement, the Panthers (9-12-1, 4-4) were forced to call off a non-district game against Lewisville Hebron scheduled for Saturday. MHS was slated to return home to Ronnie Clanton Field on Tuesday night against Corsicana.
With the number of district games left starting to dwindle, every league game is important for MHS. The Panthers will travel to Waco University on Friday at 7 p.m., then will host Dallas Jesuit in another non-district tilt on Saturday at high noon before entertaining Cleburne next Tuesday at 7 p.m.