Northview's patience at the plate paid off in a big way as 10 walks, two hit batsmen and Joey Thomas' grand slam and six RBI game led the Knights to a 13-2 Western Indiana Conference baseball victory on Tuesday.
"We had 10 walks and two hit-by-pitch base runners, therefore the opportunity to hit was limited," Northview coach Scott McDonald said. "Joey Thomas had a monster game and was great to see him swing the bat with so much more confidence."
The Knights didn't waste any time jumping on top of the Eagles as Andrew Butts drove in Kodie Girton after he led off with a single and stole second. Both Zac Niehaus and Zach Hull drew walks to load the bases and Seth Lunsford drove in a run on a fielder's choice. Curtis Grove was hit-by-pitch and Thomas followed with the slam for a 6-0 Knights' lead.
TJ Decker reached after he was hit-by-pitch and came around to score on an error for a 7-0 lead.
Throughout the contest, walks played a big role in setting up the Knights' scores according to McDonald.
"Zac Niehaus and Zach Hull walked five times between them and we had guys step up and drive in runs," McDonald said.
In the second inning, the Knights added two more runs thanks to Thomas, who doubled home both Niehaus and Hull, who had reached via a free pass.
While the Knights offense was pounding out a comfortable lead, Caleb Mershon was shutting down the Eagles on the mound.
"Caleb Mershon did an excellent job tonight with 11 K's and only one walk," McDonald said. "We felt he had great late movement on his fastball which was a big factor. He also was able to hit spots to set up their hitters."
Northview was able to end the game in the sixth inning as Bryant Pestoff, Tanner Glenn and Tyler Trout each walked. Pestoff came in to score on a wild pitch, Thomas drew a walk and Carson Kleiber cleared the bases with a three-run double.
Northview (10-1 overall, 2-0 WIC) hosts Class 4A No. 11 Lawrence Central on Friday evening at 6 p.m.
2B -- Nv (Thomas, Trout, Kleiber), BC -- (Patrick). HR -- Nv (Thomas). SB -- Nv (Girton, Lunsford).