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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Tiger Cubs stumble in opener

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Greencastle shortstop Ryan Pettit readies to fire a shot to first base during Tuesday's contest. [Order this photo]
The 2011 season didn't start how the Greencastle baseball team had hoped. They opened the season Tuesday against last year's Class 3A sectional winner West Vigo and it was clear early, the night was going to be a tough one. Not helping matters much was the mix of cold temperatures and a stiff breeze.

Dylan Aff got things started for the Vikings with a shot to left field, which Tanner Parker had a tough time corralling, and found his way to second base. West Vigo's third batter Zack Kent reached after a dropped third strike wasn't thrown to first and the duo were brought home by a single to right-center field to put the visitors on top 2-0.

While the Vikings started out with strong bats, Greencastle couldn't buy a hit. Over the course of the first three innings, the Tiger Cubs sent 11 batters to the plate, with only two reaching base and those were by walk.

After the Vikings tacked on another run in the top of third inning, Greencastle began to find its way. Keegan Remsburg was walked to start the inning, while Landon Miller reached after knocking a single to right field. Remsburg would later score, but if the Tiger Cubs had plans of staging a rally, the Vikings had other ideas.

Ryan Battin relieved starter Remsburg in the top of the fourth and West Vigo took advantage of the change. Battin walked three of the first four batters he faced. With two runners on, Cody Thornton smacked a two RBI single to left field to put the Vikings up 6-1 going into the bottome of fourth.

In the fifth West Vigo picked up where it left off. Once again the Vikings scored three runs in the top of the top of the inning to push their advantage to 9-1 after the Tiger Cubs failed to score in the bottom of the inning.

Things got even sketchier when West Vigo tacked on two more runs in the top of the sixth inning and looked to make it a short night with a 10-point advantage, 11-1. But showing that they still had some fight in them, Greencastle extended the game to its final inning.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Remsburg and Miller reached on back-to-back singles to put the Tiger Cubs in business. Remsburg actually had a chance to make it to third, but his foot caught on the base and his stumble left him on second. Remsburg later scored to keep the Tiger Cubs alive in the game.

In the final inning, West Vigo failed to score, but the damage had been done. Andy Bell scored in the bottom of the seventh for the Tiger Cubs to make the final tally 11-3 in favor of the Vikings.

Following the game GHS head coach Troy Remsburg saw some things his team needs to focus on before its next game Monday versus North Putnam.

"I saw some positives, but I saw some, being our first game, a lot of things we need to work on," Remsburg said. "We were too much big swinging tonight where they were just putting the ball in play. As the game went on we started to do that. We had too many walks. I know it's cold and I don't want that to be the excuse. We bring in Ryan (Battin) there not even throwing 10 pitches to bring him in -- it's going to take him an inning to get loose."

The Tiger Cubs had just five hits on the night and none for extra bases. That is something Remsburg said the team would have to work on, as well as their pitching.

"Adjust their hitting," he said. "That's what we talked about out there, adjust our hitting, which we did as the game went on, and pitchers -- less walks. I think we walked 13 or 14 and eight of them score. That's just an automatic run when you play at their level -- West Vigo or sectional opponent. You walk a kid and nine times out of 10 they're going to score. We just have to cut done on those."

Miller was 2-for-3 with two singles on the night to lead the Tiger Cubs.

Greencastle will host North Putnam Monday at 5 p.m.

At Greencastle

West Vigo 201 332 0 -- 11 6 X

Greencastle 000 101 1 -- 3 5 X

WP -- West

LP -- Remsburg

Next game -- Greencastle will host North Putnam Monday at 5 p.m.