By Coach Robert Driscol

The Union Baseball Team split with South Tama on July 10 in Tama. The home team carried an 18-8 record into the doubleheader and won the first game, 11-1, in six innings. The Knights won the nightcap, 6-0.

In game one, South Tama scored in the first inning to take an early lead, but Union answered right back in the second to even the score. Bo Bader reached on an error, advance to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Nic Peters, and later scored on a single by Austin Kiler. South Tamaresponded with eight runs in the third inning to break the game open. South Tama added one more run in the fourth to take a commanding 10-1 lead. The Knights were held scoreless in the third through sixth innings. The Trojans added a run in the bottom of the sixth to end the game on the ten run rule, 11-1.

Nic Peterswas the losing pitcher, giving up seven earned runs, 11 hits, while striking out three, walking one, and hitting one batter.

Game two saw the Knights come out with a bit more fire and focus. Union scored runs in the first, second, third and fifth innings to earn a 6-0 win. Sophomore Justin Carey got things going when he led off the game with a double and later scored on fellow sophomore Brady Driscol’s single. Nic Peters got things going in the second inning by reaching on an error, advancing to second on senior Justin Clark’s sac bunt, and later scored on a passed ball. The Knights continued their scoring into the third inning when Driscol reached on a single and scored on a double by sophomore Alex Barz. Barz’s runner, senior Austin Howe, scored on a single by Bader to round out the scoring for the inning.

Union tacked on two more runs in the fifth when Bo Bader reached on a two out single, advanced to second on a walk issued to Peters, and later scored on an error. Austin Kiler followed up with a RBI single scoring Peters to push the Union lead to 6-0.

As the offense was producing runs, Brady Driscol and the Union defense kept the Trojans in check. Driscol’s shutout, his second of the season, was earned by giving up four hits, striking out eight, walking one, and hitting two batters through seven innings of work.

Union is now 12-15 on the season with home games on July 11, at Vinton on Monday, July 15, and the District Tournament at Benton on July 19 at 7:00.

“Tonight was a strange night with two completely different games. In game one, we never got into a flow and played flat which lead to some errors in the field and a lack of offense. We did not like the way game one ended and came out with more determination the second game which fortunately resulted in a strong performance. Brady threw a nice ball game and was able to change speeds for strikes and keep them off balance. Several players had key defensive plays in the game for us; Peters tracked down a hard hit ball in left, Clark had a diving catch in right for a third out, and Bader had several good stretches and put outs at first base for us,” stated Coach Driscol.