As of Friday, May 3, 2013
CUERO - Cuero wanted to execute opportunities presented to them to get ahead.
They didn't know, however, it was going to be after one inning.
The Gobblers sent 10 hitters to bat in the bottom of the first inning for a seven-run lead they would not relinquish, completing a 15-5 win over Columbus in five innings Friday. They lead the best of three series 1-0.
"The plan is always to get ahead and stay on them," said junior first basemen Clint Davis. "When you have the foot down on them, you never let go, and you try to score more runs."
After walking and hitting a batter to lead off the game, Columbus pitcher Nick Masarik grooved a pitch to Davis, who drove in the first run of the game with an RBI single. Blake Reeve followed that with a double to bring in another run.
The Cardinals didn't help themselves defensively in the first by committing four errors and finishing with seven total.
The lead was comfortable enough for Cuero coach Phil Schwarz to lift pitcher Austin Johnson early.
"We want to save him for tomorrow," Schwarz said. "We wanted this first one at home. You never expect in a playoff game to score 15 runs.
"I had a feeling we were about to explode at some point."
The senior was relieved after two innings. Johnson moved to shortstop and continued to contribute.
"I just tried to make plays to help my team get out," he said.
The Gobblers continued to pile on after the first inning. Cuero scored at least one run in each inning, including four in the fifth inning, to complete the mercy-rule victory.
During the fourth inning, after the Cardinals scored two runs in the third, the Gobblers only allowed two hits.
The series moves to Columbus, where the Gobblers hope to keep their momentum going. Already up a game in the series, the Gobblers' game plan Friday needs to be brought Saturday, Schwarz said.
"We got to play good defense," he said. "We need to come out and play good baseball and get a win there in Columbus."