WEST TERRE HAUTE -- West Vigo's Darrick Harden walked off the mound Friday night with a deed to the Northview Knights' baseball team. The sophomore lefthander owned the Knights lock, stock and barrel.
Harden pitched a six-hit shutout and West Vigo handed Northview its second straight loss and second straight 10-run-rule loss by a 10-0 score.
"It was almost a carbon copy [of Tuesday night]. We let them jump up early on us, of course, that got them fired up and put us in a hole, and we never could come out of it," Northview Coach Gary Witham said.
Now Northview [12-2, 8-2 in WIC] faces the daunting challenge of coming back from back-to-back 10-run-rule losses to face Terre Haute South at 10 a.m. today [Saturday] and Terre Haute North at approximately 12:30 p.m. when Big the Four Tournament resumes at Terre Haute North High School.
"When you get your head handed to you two games in a row like we have its tough to come back," Witham said.
Northview opened this week hitting over .400 as a team, averaging close to 13 hits a game. The Knights managed four hits against Harden on Tuesday and six on Friday, or 10 hits in 10 innings.
"This kid [Harden] is an ironman. He threw 160-170 pitches in three days. He earned every bit of [the win]," Witham said.
"We hit him a little better [than Tuesday] because I think he was a little more tired than he was the other night. But still, he didn't walk anybody. He throws hard enough. He throws his curve ball effectively enough that we couldn't touch him."
West Vigo coach Steve DeGroote says Harden has good movement on his pitches.
"[The Knights are] just going after it, but not getting a solid blow on [the ball]. You know [Harden's] got to be doing something when he's going against a team that averaged amost 121/2 hits per game. [The Knights] are a good ball club," DeGroote said.
When Northview did hit and threaten, West Vigo backed Harden with excellent defensive plays.
In the first inning, Northview tried to be aggressive, but Shane Cooper was thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double.
In the second inning, after Ryan Nees reached base on an error, Graig Bass doubled down the right field line. Nees hesitated at second base and was thrown out at third.
And in the fifth inning, Northview was playing for one run to send the game into a sixth but could not score a runner from third because of a major-league throw from West Vigo right fielder Josh Piper.
West Vigo scored six runs on four hits, one error and two hit batters in the first inning. The Vikings made it 10-0 with a four runs on four hits, one hit batter and three wild pitches.
Bass led Northview's hitting with a single and double.
Stuckey, Hughes (4), Shoemaker (4) and Trout; Harden and Fowler. W -- Harden (6-1). L -- Stuckey. LOB -- Nv 6, WV 2. 2B -- Bass, Fowler, Keith.
Next game: Northview [12-2, 8-2 in WIC] travels Terre Haute North on Saturday for a 10 a.m.game with Terre Haute South and plays Terre Haute North at 12:30 p.m. West Vigo [9-2, 4-0 in WIC] play Terre Haute North at approximately 3 p.m. and Terre Haute South at 5 p.m.