Beverly/Lowell tops Prospect

LANCASTER, Ohio – Beverly/Lowell Post 389/750 rebounded from a sluggish showing Tuesday with a lively performance Wednesday.

A day after looking lethargic in a 4-1 loss to Chillicothe, Beverly/Lowell defeated Prospect Post 368, 9-1, at Beavers Field in Lancaster behind a stellar outing from starting pitcher Ben Barnas and an offense that pounded out 11 base hits.

“Everything I complained about yesterday went the opposite way today,” said Post 389/750 head coach Todd Engle. “When they play like that, that’s a fun team to coach.”

Everyone in B/L’s starting lineup had a hit or a run-driven-in. Jake Ullman and Kyler Dennis both had two hits each. Joel Estes had a triple and Ethan Estes hit a double for the only extra-base hits of the game.

“We had several quality at-bats today,” Engle said. “When we’re running the bases and playing like that, we’re a pretty tough out. And it doesn’t hurt to have big-time Ben out on the mound.”

Barnas (2-2) allowed just one run on three hits in six innings. He threw 75 pitches in the game, 43 for strikes, and worked quickly for the most part, using just five pitches in the first inning, 13 in the third, eight in the fourth and 11 in the fifth.

Prospect struck first in the top of the second inning when it scored its only run of the game. With one out in the frame, Barnas issued a four-pitch walk to Chris Flack, who would end up at third, courtesy of two wild pitches. With two outs in the inning, Evan Webb rolled a single up the middle to plate Flack and make it a 1-0 game.

Not wanting to lose for the second time in two days, B/L quickly responded with three runs in the bottom of the second. With runners on the corners and one out, Joel Estes socked to a deep drive to left-center field over the left fielder’s head for a two-run triple. Estes later scored on a wild pitch to give B/L a 3-1 advantage. The rally chased Prospect starter Scott Foster, who was relieved by Webb.

Engle’s squad struck again in the fourth. Jake Ullman led off the inning with a base on balls, stole second and then advanced to third on Ethan Estes’ sacrifice bunt. Derek Layton would drive him in with a sacrifice fly to right to make it 4-1.

Three more runs were added when Webb couldn’t find the strike zone in the fifth. After Blake Kidder led off with a single, the next four batters walked, plating two runs. A third run would score when, with the bases still loaded, Layton grounded to short and the throw home was late.

The victory improved Beverly/Lowell’s record to 16-12 on the season. Tournament action continues Thursday for B/L when it plays Mason County at 4 p.m.