Centerville head coach Ryan Hodges called it a ‘true team grit win’ as the Big Reds rallied for four runs in the bottom of the seventh to walk it off with a 6-5 win against Chariton on Friday.
“Again, we started off slow but I think a game like this will get us going from the first pitch on from now on. These guys never quit, we all always believe we are going to win until the final out is made,” Hodges said.
Centerville got into a hole early with Chariton rattling off four runs with two outs in the second inning to take a 4-0 lead. The Chargers would extend their lead to 5-0 in fifth but the Big Reds were looking to get those runs back in the bottom of the inning.
A Kayden Kauzlarich RBI to right would just miss a diving Chariton glove to cut the deficit to 5-1. With one out and the bases loaded, Centerville would stall with Merrick Mathews and Walker White flying out in the infield to prevent anymore damage.
Kaleb Cochran’s RBI ground out in the sixth inning would be Centerville’s only scoring in the sixth as they once again were threatening before stranding runners on second and third.
Now trailing 5-2 entering the bottom of the seventh, the Big Reds were in need of a rally to remain undefeated. With one out, Centerville would hit four straight singles with Kolby Micetich hitting the final one to cut the deficit to two with the bases still loaded.
Kade Mosley would step up to plate and score another run for Centerville on a Charger error. Cochran would then draw a walk with the bases still loaded to tie the game at five.
With the Chariton infield in, Brady Kauzlarich would hit one hard to the second baseman who fired it home. Although the throw looked to be ahead of the runner, the Chariton catcher would drop the throw allowing Micetich to score the winning run as Kauzlarich was mobbed at first by his teammates after getting the walk-off win.
Otis Williams got the start for Centerville giving up four runs on four hits with three walks and five strikeouts. Myles Clawson would replace Williams for the final three innings and would do well allowing one run on two hits with five strikeouts.
“Otis threw a good game keeping us in it, pitching through adversity. Myles came in and threw with a lot of confidence. Great seeing two young guys step up and Walker (White) is on fire at the plate right now coming up with big hits each game,” Hodges said.
Brady Kauzlarich, Kayden Kauzlarich, White and Clawson all had two hits in the game while Cochran led the team with a pair of RBIs.
“We are getting ready to start a two-week stretch that could really separate us in the conference along with some very good non-conference games that will test us,” Hodges said.
No. 10 Centerville (7-0) travel to Bloomfield for a conference doubleheader against Davis County (4-3) on Monday at 5:30 p.m.