Kail Hill pitches Marietta past Meigs in first start

Righty threw five scoreless innings, striking out eight

MARIETTA — Kail Hill got his first start of the year on the mound and made it count.

The senior right-hander threw five scoreless innings, striking out eight batters, walking one and allowing just four hits to earn the win in Marietta’s 9-0 victory over Meigs Tuesday at Legion Field.

“This was the first start Kail’s had all year,” said MHS skipper Josh McKitrick.

“He’s been out of the bullpen all year. We wanted to give him a start today just to see in case we needed him at some point for longer than a couple innings. He pitched exactly how I figured he would. He threw very well. He threw strikes and he threw a lot of ground balls.”

Seven Marietta batters combined for eight hits.

Five Meigs errors also helped the Tigers’ cause.

After Cole Alkire’s one-out single in the bottom of the second, Derek Duckworth doubled to left to bring him.

The throw home was late, and the catcher’s throw to second to try and get Duckworth ricocheted into the outfield to allow Duckworth to score and make it 2-0.

Marietta (14-5) added three runs in the fifth.

Joel Neville’s infield single got things started. He came around to score later on Hill’s single to left.

After Corbin Alkire’s single through the left side loaded the bases, Dakota Miller notched a two-out, two-run single to make it 5-0.

The Tigers loaded the bases in the bottom of the sixth.

Cole Alkire scored on a wild pitch before Hill’s groundout to short plated Duckworth. Adam Coil missed a home run by inches when his deep flyball to right bounced off the top of the fence for an RBI triple to plate Jared Richards. Coil scored Marietta’s ninth run on a Meigs error.

MHS, which plays at Cambridge today, is undefeated in Southeast District play.

“We’re growing,” McKitrick said. “We’re in the right spot where we want to be getting ready for tournaments here in a couple weeks. We’re just going to keep rolling with it.”

Hill escaped trouble twice to preserve Marietta’s shutout. After a leadoff walk in the first, Briar Wolfe poked a two-out double to left. Cole Alkire threw a strike to cutoff man Duckworth, whose throw to catcher Justin Thompson was in plenty of time for the final out of the inning.

In the top of the fifth, with runners at first and second and one out, Hill fanned Corey Cox and Thompson threw out Michael Kesterson trying to steal third to end the inning.

Adam Coil pitched two innings of scoreless relief to secure the win for Marietta. Kesterson pitched all six innings for Meigs, walking three and striking out two.

Cole Alkire was 2 for 3 for MHS while Coil tripled, Duckworth doubled and Hill, Corbin Alkire, Miller and Neville all singled.

“We’re still solid, one through nine,” McKitrick said of his lineup. “I think we’ve kind of found our little niche where we’ve got some power hitters, some guys who can bunt guys over and some guys who can hit them in afterwards. I feel real comfortable with where we’re at right now.”