It wasn’t from a lack of trying but in the end, the Marion Senior Babe Ruth team lost to Hillsboro Thursday in Marion, 19-12 and 11-9.
The Warriors started the first game on a roll. Wil Case and Marshall Ragland each had RBI singles in the first inning to lead Marion to an early 5-0 advantage.
Marion continued to tack on runs in the second inning. Abe Eldridge hit in Corey Seacat and Cole Lewman with a single. Eldridge was caught in a rundown between second and first base, which allowed Colton Olsen to score from third. Case eventually scored Eldridge with another RBI single. Austin Pedersen hit a sacrifice fly to score another run to give the Warriors a 10-1 lead.
Case had a productive game at the plate. He went 3-for-3 with three RBIs. He hit in Eldridge again in the bottom of the fourth inning. He also shined in the field; he had two diving catches in center field — one in the first inning and another in the top of the fourth inning.
Hillsboro eventually chipped away at the Marion lead, scoring eight runs against Heath Hill and Ethan Hett through five innings.
With the score at 11-9, coach Tyler Mermis called on Case again in the top of the seventh to close the game out. The first four Hillsboro batters drew walks with Luke Moore seeing four balls that led to a Hillsboro run. Hillsboro batter Matt Hiebert hit a two-RBI double that led to a deluge of runs. Case was eventually pulled in favor of Seacat, but by the time the half inning was over, Hillsboro had taken the lead, 19-11.
Case walked and scored in the bottom of the seventh, but that was the only run Marion could muster, losing 19-12.
Hillsboro wasted no time generating a lead in the second game but Marion battled back bringing the score to within one run, 7-6, at the beginning of the sixth inning. But, Hillsboro scored four runs in the sixth to make the score 11-6.
Marion scored three more runs but Hillsboro closer Ben Gardner closed the door on an 11-9 Hillsboro win in the seventh.