The Marion baseball team salvaged a split at Sedgwick Tuesday, moving to 5-1 in Heart of America league play and 8-2 overall.
Marion lost Game 1, 8-7.
The Warriors scored first with a one-hit, two-run third inning. Blaine Mermis hit a two-run single, and Marion scored two more runs off four hits in the fourth.
But Sedgwick cut Marion’s lead in half in the bottom of the inning with a one-hit, two-run effort and then tied the game by scoring two more runs in the fifth.
The Cardinals scored four runs on three hits and an error in the sixth inning to lead 8-4. Marion came one-run short of tying the game in the final half-inning, pushing across three runs, thanks in part to Evann Heidebrecht’s two-run single. But the Warriors stranded the tying and go-ahead runs.
“Unfortunately, the stat that can pretty much sum up the game was we left nine on base, which isn’t terrible,” coach Roger Schroeder said. “You’re going to leave guys on base. It’s just the way the game is. But of the nine that we left on base, we left all nine in scoring position.”
Heidebrecht went 2-for-4 at the plate and drove in two runs. Mermis also drove in two runs.
Jaxton Tracy (3-1) absorbed the pitching loss. In 1.1 innings of relief of starter Mermis, Tracy gave up two hits and four runs (three earned). He also walked two batters.
“They did a better job of executing in crunch time, putting pressure on us, and we didn’t respond particularly well,” Schroeder said. “We did do a good job in that seventh inning of making it tight.”
Marion won Game 2, 16-1, putting the run-rule into effect with a five-hit, seven-run sixth inning in which Corbin Wheeler hit a two-run double as the highlight.
The Warriors scored one run in the first inning, then pushed across four in the third inning off five hits, including Wheeler’s two-run single.
Sam Zinn hit a sacrifice fly to score a run in the fourth inning, and a three-hit, three-run fifth inning gave Marion a 9-0 lead through five. In that half-inning, Chase Stringer hit a two-run home run.
The Warriors blew the game open in the sixth. Sedgwick scored in the bottom half of the inning, but it was not enough to overcome Marion’s run-rule win.
Luke Lanning and Garrett Hoffner were both 3-for-5 at the plate with one RBI. Wheeler had four RBIs and Stringer three.
Stringer (2-0) earned the win. He scattered three hits and one earned run over six innings. He walked four Cardinals and struck out nine.
“(In Game 1), it felt like our group kind of got punched in the mouth and didn’t really respond to it,” Schroeder said. “That being said, we did turn around in Game 2 and did a much better job.”
Coming—Marion (5-1, 8-2) was scheduled to host Ell-Saline Tuesday and will travel to Inman Friday. In Marion’s first meeting with Inman March 29, the Warriors earned two run-rule victories.