Just keep on building.
That’s the message Western Hills coach Eric Grubb has for his team after a 4-2 loss to state-ranked Bourbon County in eight innings Saturday at WHHS.
“I tell our guys all the time, ‘Turn the page. Don’t forget what you just read, but turn the page and move on to the next thing.’ That’s what you hope these guys are doing,” Grubb said. “They’re learning from what the previous game presented to them and taking that into the next game.”
The Wolverines (4-9) were trying to follow-up a 13-1 rout of Burgin the night before with an impressive win Saturday. But they came up just a little short against the Colonels (12-1), who have won five straight and are ranked 12th in the latest Kentucky High School Baseball Coaches Association.
“Our guys were up to the challenge,” Grubb said. “They went up there and competed and did everything they could do.”
BCHS loaded the bases with one out in the eighth, as two walks were sandwiched around a single from senior lead-off hitter Cameron Whitaker. Senior Ben Schanding then hit an RBI sac fly to center field and senior Tyler Bretz followed with an RBI single to left-center field.
WHHS went down 1-2-3 in the bottom half of the inning to end the game.
“It’s a tough loss for us. ... We’ve been on the losing end of some tough games just like that one right there,” Grubb said. “Hopefully they’ll take it as a growing experience and they’re getting better every single day.”
Senior Nick Wheeler pitched 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief to get the win for the Colonels. He allowed three hits and struck out five.
Freshman Conner Graves pitched the final inning for the Wolverines, allowing two runs on two hits with two walks. He was the fourth pitcher used and the second freshmen.
“Pitching today, we threw a lot of young guys who got their first chance of throwing varsity games and I thought they did very well,” Grubb said.
WHHS led 1-0 in the first after sophomore Tyler Anglin led off with a first-pitch homer to left-center field.
That lead didn’t last long, however, as BCHS scored twice in the second, getting an RBI double from junior Shelby Jackson and and an RBI sac fly from Whitaker.
WHHS then tied it at 2-all in the fifth after senior Seth Roush’s single scored freshman Cameron Barton, who led off with a double.
“Offensively, we did alright. We did the things that we needed to do, we just couldn’t get the hit when we needed the hit,” Grubb said. “When we had guys in scoring position early in the game we just couldn’t capitalize.”
Whitaker had three singles and an RBI for the Colonels. Jackson had an RBI double and a single, Bretz finished with two singles and an RBI and junior Gunnar Courtney added two singles.
Roush had two singles and an RBI for the Wolverines.
On Friday night, WHHS easily beat BHS 13-1 in five innings after exploding for nine runs in the third.
Freshman Thomas Bennett had a big night at the plate for the Wolverines, going 3 for 3 with a triple and five RBIs. Anglin had two hits and drove in two runs, while Roush had a double, a single and an RBI.
WHHS opens district play when it hosts Franklin County Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.