In Brookville last Thursday, Batesville traveled to Jim Hughes Field for the wrap-up of a two-game Eastern Indiana Athletic Conference set. In cooler but sunny conditions, Batesville claimed an 8-1 victory (and the 2-game sweep) over FC, who entered the week as the 7th-ranked team in Indiana’s Class 3A coaches poll.

Riley Zink won by scattering just four hits across five innings while punching out 7. The starting hurler also belted a long ball over the fence in left in Batesville’s last at-bat. Jack Grunkemeyer tossed two scoreless innings out of the bullpen.

The Bulldogs’ two runs in the first would stand up as enough to carry them. Taking cuts off starter Brant Ertel, Trey Peters reached second when his pop fly into short left found the grass. Max Baumer promptly singled to right. A strikeout later, Sam Voegele singled back through the middle to score Peters and courtesy runner Will Meer. Zach Wade walked but Voegele was overzealous on a wild pitch and got tagged out trying to dive back to third base.

FC scored its only run in the next half-inning. The 2-out rally started with a two-base outfield error. Runner Conner Roleson, a former Bulldog, scooted home on a double to left-center field by Chase Burton. Zink avoided further trouble by fanning the next batter.

Grunkemeyer started the second with a double to left. Cole Werner slapped one to the left side, with the shortstop’s throw getting past first base to send Grunkemeyer home. Werner stole second and later scored when Calvin Sherwood pulled a triple to deep right. Peters earned an RBI by grounding out to short, making it 5-1. Baumer singled but Zink’s line drive was corralled in center for the third out.

Zink worked around a walk in FC’s second at-bat, bringing the Dogs back to the dish. With one out, Wade coaxed another base on balls and swiped second. A punchout later, Werner went opposite field for a run-scoring double. Ertel later fanned Sherwood to leave runners at second and third.

FC had runners on the corners in the fifth before Zink got Burton on a line drive to Sherwood at short. After Zink’s homer in the seventh off reliever Garrett Ertel, Voegele stroked a double to center. A hit-batsman and infield single led to Werner getting an RBI on a bases-loaded walk. Ertel got out of the jam on a pop-up to short and fly ball to right. Grunkemeyer struck out the side in FC’s seventh.

Included in BHS’ 11-hit night were 2 hits each by Grunkemeyer and Werner. B. Ertel suffered the loss, striking out 4 Bulldogs but surrendering 4 earned runs. He also led FC’s offense with a pair of hits.

Vs. Daleville (April 24)
The Cats were involved in a pitcher’s duel as Daleville paid a visit Saturday. The Broncos were able to push a run across in the top of the fifth off starter Brady Brandenburg, who suffered the hard-luck 1-0 loss.

Brandenburg allowed 5 hits and added 2 strikeouts while walking a pair. Roleson finished on the mound, walking one and punching out one.
The Wildcats were held to three hits and two bases on balls. Burton had a single and Hunter Geis and G. Ertel a double each.

Despite the losses, FC still came in at No. 9 in the poll to open this week.
FC rebounded Monday to knock off South Dearborn at home, 4-1. The Cats are now 8-5 and 3-4 in the EIAC.