— Game story by Joe Smith
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Morgantown High baseball is all about energy at the plate.
“We’re aggressive one through nine — it doesn’t matter who is up. We hit the ball hard all the time. It’s hard to say there’s a time when we don’t,” senior Caleb Taylor said.
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a pitch where the Mohigans baseball team doesn’t swing, and for awhile Tuesday evening, it seemed as if every swing was connecting.
Morgantown compiled 16 hits in 31 at-bats as it downed cross-town rival University, 17-2, in five innings at Mylan Park.
“Our guys love to swing the bats. We’re actually, for the first time I can remember coaching, we’re swinging at a lot of 3-0 pitches just because we’re so aggressive and love to hit,” Mohigans coach Mark McCarty said.
“These guys worked really hard on their bodies this winter. They’re strong and they love to swing. It’s kind of fun.”
Morgantown’s (8-2) performance at the plate was powered by a three hit, four RBI performance by Taylor, which included the senior’s fifth home run of the season — which ties him for first in the state.
“I was just looking to hit the ball hard, and I saw some good pitches. That’s about it,” he said.
University (3-5) struggled in the field against the stout Morgantown performance at the plate, missing many easy catches and leaving open gaps for opposing batters to exploit.
“Basically it comes down to, in the game of baseball, doing what you’re supposed to — pitch, catch, throw and make timely hits. Right now, we can’t put any four of the facets of the game together, and we’re still searching to put together a complete game,” Hawks coach Buck Riggleman said.
“We as coaches can sit out here and hit ground balls and work over the different situations like we’ve been doing since February. We had a great defensive practice yesterday, and thought we were putting things together. But when it comes time to play, you have to step on the baseball field and perform.”
With a four-game slate ahead to close the week, including a key regional matchup Friday against visiting Wheeling Park, McCarty said Morgantown will look to carry the momentum.
“This is a tough week. The strange thing is, we’ve played ten games, and when we get back from the beach in a couple of weeks, our season will just about be over,” he said. “We loaded our early season with tough teams thinking we might get some rainouts, like usual, and now we’re playing them all. We feel really good to be 8-2 right now.”
(Photos by William Wotring/The Dominion Post)