NICKERSON — After the Hoisington Cardinals worked hard for an opening baseball victory, the nightcap came much easier.
Hoisington swept Nickerson 9-6 and 14-0 Tuesday in a non-league baseball doubleheader. Hoisington improves to 6-2 while Nickerson drops to 0-8.
First-game starter Colton Zink (2-0) shook off a six-run second inning to throw a complete game. Second-game starter Terry Crawford (2-1) threw a three-hit shutout in the nightcap.
“We found a way to stop their momentum and win that first game,” said Hoisington coach Tim Schremmer. “We’ve gone through those type of games in the past. They kept their poise. These guys found a way to get it done.”
After a four-run second inning, Hoisington found itself down 6-4 after Nickerson’s six-run second inning.
The Cardinals pushed across four second-inning runs. Brad Reif doubled and Jacob Warnken walked, Zade Sanders followed with an RBI double.
Warnken and Sanders scored on Zac Phloehouft’s triple. Trent Schremmer’s sacrifice fly made it 4-0.
But the Panthers rallied with a six-run second. Leadoff batter Devlin Frazier and Bryon Young reached base after strikeouts. Austin Engelland and Ben Smalling loaded the bases with singles. Chase Timmons delivered a two-run single and Jake Engelland followed with a two-run triple. Jake Engelland scored on Braden Stewart’s groundball.
Jacob Mader’s double drove home Stewart.
“Colton was throwing strikes and doing his job,” Schremmer said. “He pitched stronger after he got out of that inning.”
The Cardinals tied it 6-6 with a two-run fourth inning. Sanders doubled and scored on a pair of wild pitches. Hunter Hanzlick was nearly retired on a double-play play. But Braedon Crites singled and Zink tied it on an RBI single.
The Cardinals pushed the game-winning run across when Hanzlick was hit by a pitch with an 0-2 count in the fifth inning. Sanders and Phloehouft and Trent Schremmer all walked off losing pitcher Jacob Mader.
Zink threw five shutout innings after the second inning. He stranded the go-ahead runner on base in the fourth inning. His best work came in the sixth when he worked out of a bases-loaded jam. Zink retired Young on a pop out, Goble popped out and Mader was retired on a grounder to Zink.
“Colton threw some of the best pitches in that inning,” Schremmer said.
The Cardinals added two valuable insurance runs in the seventh inning.
Warnken singled and Phloehouft reached on an error. Schremmer delivered a two-run single off reliever Casey Goble.
“I wasn’t sure we were ready to play our best baseball when we got off the bus,” coach Schremmer said. “When it happened like I thought, I reminded them they’ve got to be ready to play when the game starts.”
Hoisington’s Reif doubled twice and drove in two runs off four hits.
Crites had four hits and two runs batted in. Hoisington scored five runs in the third inning and six runs in the fourth inning to break the game open. Sanders also had two runs batted in. Zink, Schremmer, Hanzlick and Warnken also delivered RBIs. The Cardinals delivered 13 hits in their best hitting of the season.
“We relaxed the hit the ball better than we have all year,” coach Schremmer said. “It was good to see us get some good swings and be aggressive at the plate.”
Crawford’s no-hitter was broken up by Goble’s fourth-inning single.
Mader and Zach Henson also had singles.
“We’ve got to have some guys step up. We haven’t gotten over the hump yet,” said Nickerson coach Sheldon Stewart. “The kids are learning every time out.”
HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL
HOISINGTON 9, NICKERSON 6
Hoisington 040 210 2 — 9 8 3
Nickerson 060 000 0 — 6 8 2
Colton Zink & Jake Warnken. Jacob Mader, Casey Goble (6) & Bryon Young. W—Zink, 2-0. L—Mader. 2B—Hoisington, Zade Sanders 2; Brad Reif; Nickerson, Mader.. 3B—Hoisington, Nickerson, Jake Engelland.
HOISINGTON 14, NICKERSON 0
Hoisington 215 60 — 14 13 1
Nickerson 000 00 — 0 3 3
Crawford & Zink. Young, Ben Smalling (3) & Mader W—Crawford, 2-0. L— Young. 2B—Hoisington, Reif 2.