Bluejackets’ bats come alive in 18-8 win over Loogootee

By Noah Dalton

MITCHELL – Mitchell picked up their 15th win of the season on Thursday night, putting away Loogootee 18-8 in six innings.

The Bluejackets were hot from the batter’s box, earning 16 hits on the evening. More importantly though for Mitchell, they racked up 16 RBIs against the Lions, making a point to drive home baserunners after recent performances, where Bluejackets head coach Jerry Chaney noted they’ve struggled to do so.

“Loogootee is a good team. They’re well coached and they’ve been around. They almost beat Forest Park and some other teams in their conference, so we knew it’d be a battle. Our bats came to life tonight. I told their coach before the game, I said ‘We’ve had games where we left 26 guys on, 12 guys, 14,’ and tonight we drove in runs, which was nice to see our bats really get going. Our emphasis all week was to get the run in. Get them on and get them in and I thought we did a better job of that this time,” said Chaney.

Ben Seitzinger swings during an at-bat against Loogootee

Mitchell’s production at the plate started early, with the team scoring 11 runs in the first three innings, charged by a seven-run second inning, where they had runs batted in by Bryson Zeeks, Ben Seitzinger, Simon Gaines, Ashton Luman and Kody Earl.

The Bluejackets carried an 11-1 lead into the top of the fifth, after giving up a run to Loogootee in the top of the third due to an error on a ground ball hit by Luke Lengacher, which allowed Isaac Waggner to score from third.

On the verge of the mercy rule ending without a run scored in the fifth inning, the Lions found new life at the plate themselves, loading the bases with no outs for Lengacher, who smacked a grand slam over the center field fence, nearly cutting Mitchell’s near double-digit lead in half. They scored again in the frame via an RBI single from Koen Waggner before a double play from the Bluejackets got them out of the jam and retired the side.

Mitchell’s bats did not let up as the game continued, as they extended their lead by continuing with their objective for the week as outlined by Chaney, “get them on and get them in.”

Mitchell’s AJ Sarver slides home to score a run against Loogootee

They scored eight more in the next two innings to invoke the 10-run mercy rule for the victory.

Gaines, Sarver, Seitzinger, Glassco, Zeeks, Earl, Ethan Turner and Ashton Luman all earned hits for the Bluejackets, with Seitzinger, Turner and Luman adding three each to lead the team.

Glassco led the team in RBIs with three. Zeeks, Earl and Luman each contributed two.

Both teams have multiple games ahead on Saturday, which forced them to utilize their pitching depth to save some arms for their upcoming games.

Gibson Glassco looks to drive a pitch against Loogootee

Mitchell brought three different throwers to the hill; Luman (3 innings), Connor Teague (1 inning), and Earl to close (2 innings).

The Lions utilized five; K. Waggoner (2 innings), Mason Britton (0.1 innings), Jackson Bauer (1.2 innings), Drew Walker (0.1 innings) and Lengacher (1 inning).

“Well, both of us have tournaments on Saturday, so we’re trying to save our arms for that,” Chaney said. “We’re in a part of the season where you got to save your arms and legs and you need to be ready for that. I think he threw a little bit more than he wanted to tonight to try and stop our bats, and I thought, for the most part, our pitchers did a great job. We were up 11-1 there, cruising, and then we didn’t throw some strikes there and got behind and then they hit the grand slam. It made it a different game but our bats really came to life, it was good to see that.”

Ashton Luman throws a pitch against Loogootee

On Saturday morning, the Bluejackets will host a four-team round-robin at Seitzinger Field for their Strike Out Cancer event. They will begin the morning at 10 a.m., taking on a surging Eastern Greene team (12-5). Then, they’ll conclude the day with a game against Barr Reeve (16-5) shortly after at 12:30 p.m.

The matchup against the Thunderbirds is a particularly interesting one for Mitchell, as the two sides could potentially find themselves matched up against each other in the finals of the 2A Sectional 47 championship, should both advance to that point.

‘We both want to see each other just in case we see each other in a sectional championship. Of course, they’re coming out of the other side. We’re coming down the bottom bracket with the bye-round. But, I want to see what they’ve got. I know they’re good. I know they’ve got against a bunch of good, young juniors and seniors. But, we’re pretty good too, so I think we’ll be okay,” Chaney said of the matchup.