SPRINGVILLE - Trailing early in their season-opening doubleheader hosting Maquoketa Valley Monday, June 15, the Springville baseball team got their offense going late in the first game and then kept it going early into the second as the Orioles started 2020 with an impressive sweep of the Wildcats.
“We have some things that we need to clean up, but this is exactly how we wanted to start the season,” said Springville baseball coach Tony Dlouhy, as his team rallied from a 3-1 and 4-2 deficits to win the opener 6-5.
“We had a lot of boys come up with big hits right when we needed them late in the game and had just enough pitching to hold on for the win.”
It was the Orioles (2-0) who actually struck first as a Cade Zaruba ground out in the bottom of the second scored Gabe Dlouhy with the season’s first run.
Maquoketa Valley answered plating three third inning runs to take a lead, but back came the hosts once again as Kyle Koppes reach with a single, then scored thanks to a pair of Wildcat errors.
Maquoketa Valley added a single run in the fifth to take a 4-2 lead, but after Dylan DeMean and Alex Koppes each crossed the plate in the bottom of the frame, the score was tied 4-4 before the Orioles took a lead they would not lose in the sixth as Dlouhy and Tommy Hagensick each crossed the plate thanks to a combination of Wildcat errors and wild pitches.
The visitors rallied in the seventh plating a single run to pull with a run before Oriole pitchers worked their way out of trouble leaving the bases loaded.
“Alex (Koppes) got the start on the mound and looked good for this early in the season,” Dlouhy said. “He’ll get better as we keep going, too. This is just the beginning.”
Kyle Koppes led the Springville offense coming through with two hits, including a first-inning double.
The nightcap saw the Orioles take command from the outset plating three first inning runs before adding five more in the second to take a huge 8-0 advantage. After Alex Koppes and Grant Gloeckner crossed the plate in the third, the hosts had blown the game wide open taking a 10-0 lead.
“That was where we kind of took our foot off the gas and lost our momentum, and that was all my fault,” said Dlouhy, as his team would eventually rally for a marathon 16-8 triumph.
“I didn’t want to run the score up on a coach (Coach Turner) I respect, and Maquoketa Valley started getting right back into the game and we struggled getting momentum back.”
The Wildcats scored two fourth inning runs to trim their deficit to eight runs at 10-2 before adding six more in the top of the sixth to close to within two runs at 10-8.
“I was happy with the way the guys were finally able to respond late in the game, but we never should have been in that situation to begin with, and that is on me. We got into some trouble with our pitching and I needed to do a better job of closing games like these out.”
Springville answered Maquoketa’s Valley’s six run top of the sixth with six of their own in the bottom half, and cruised to the eight-run victory.
Alex Koppes and Bryce Wilson powered the Oriole offense with two hits each and scored three times while Kyle Koppes walked three times and also crossed the plate on three occasions. Gloeckner also tallied three runs scored for the hosts.