MARTINSVILLE -- After starting slow offensively in its first two games of the season, the Northview Knights came off the bus swinging in Friday night's road trip to Martinsville.
Andrew Butts led off the game with a home run for the Knights and Northview collected 17 hits on the way to an 18-7 victory against the Artesians.
"We hit the ball better today than any team that I have seen at the high school level," coach Scott McDonald said of the Knights. "We had seven shots that were at somebody."
Zac Niehaus and Caleb Mason homered as well for the Knights who collected six extra base hits in the game.
"We were able to see some better pitching and really hit the ball the way we expect," McDonald said. "We had a lot of guys take great swings the other way. That is the best sign of a good hitter."
Kodie Girton had a triple, walked three times, scored four times, drove in two and stole a pair of bases for the Knights. Mason drove home three in the win and Niehaus brought four home with a pair of hits. TJ Decker had a double and Drake Stevenson had three of Northview's 10 stolen bases in the game.
Butts also had two thefts, Roy Brown had a double and Joey Thomas had two hits and an RBI. Seth Lunsford had two stolen bases and Zach Hull posted three hits with an RBI.
On the mound, Craig Bell allowed six runs over the first two innings, but was plagued by some uncharacteristically shaky defense. JT Jeffries came in to score the victory in relief.
"Craig Bell started and went two innings, JT Jeffries picked up the win in relief," McDonald said. "Our defense was not very good today. Craig had to give them four or five outs an inning. JT did a great job on the mound in relief."
2B -- Nv (Hull, Decker). 3B -- Nv (Girton). HR -- Nv (Butts, Mason, Niehaus). SB -- Nv 10 (Stevenson 3, Butts 2, Lunsford 2, Girton 2, Mason).