LINDEN -— American Legion Byron Cox Post 72 couldn’t have asked for a much better start to their 2023 summer slate. Sunday afternoon Post 72 welcomed Danville Post 118 to North Montgomery high school to officially kick off the season for both teams with a double-header. Post 72 with their much older roster from 2022, had no problems dispatching Danville in both games. In game one they took care of business 10-0 in five innings while in game two were winners 13-1 in another quick five inning affair.
To begin the season Pot 72 tuned to former Greencastle Tiger Cub and currently Olney Central product Keifer Wilson for the start on the mound. Wilson did not disappoint in his Post 72 debut. In five innings he struck out 10 and allowed two hits in what was also his first start on the mound since his senior season with the Tiger Cubs back in 2022.
The offense got going in the first inning with a pair of runs followed up by a four-run third, one in the fourth, and three in the fifth. Eight different players collected a hit in the game one win. Crawfordsville’s Bryce Dowell, and West Lafayette’s Camden Proctor along with Wilson all had two hits in the win. North Montgomery’s Jarrod Kirsch, and Ross Dyson each had a hit as did Cville’s AJ Hall and Kaiden Underwood. Covington ‘s Karver Fye also added a hit of his own. Wilson also tallied three RBI’s to round out his impressive debut.
“For not playing in at least a week or two for most of our guys I thought we hit the ball really well in both games,” Post 72 coach Kyle Proctor said. “We had some first game jitters a little bit out there in the field but that’s easy stuff that we can correct. Keifer came out and set the tone for us on the mound and his performance allowed us to feel more comfortable. We knew he could pitch but I didn’t expect him to give us that kind of start.”
In game two of the day Post 72’s combination of great pitching and offensive firepower continued. Danville’s pitching and defense didn’t do them in any favors by with four walks, two hit batsman, and an error all in the second inning. That allowed Post 72 to score six runs on just a single hit. Later in the fourth inning Post 72 scored five more runs thanks to a four error inning. When all was said and done, Post 72 wound up with just five hits but scored 13 runs.
Fountain Central’s Lukas Miller got the start and only gave up three hits in five innings. He struck out six and walked only one.
Offensively the five hits came from five different individuals as Kirsch, Dowell, Wilson, Dyson, and Fye all had one hit each. Fye and Wilson both doubled while Dowell hit a triple.
“My big thing as a coach is that walks and errors breed runs,” Proctor said. “We didn’t walk people and didn’t commit many errors while they were the exact opposite. Overall it turned out to be good day for us. Our hitters were swinging at the pitches they were supposed to. When that happens and you can put the ball in play anything can happen and today was a great example of that.”
Post 72 begins the season 2-0 and will have a very busy week. Tuesday they’ll play host to Indianapolis. Wednesday is another home game vs Lafayette and Thursday wraps up the home stand with a visit from an always talented Kokomo team. Saturday the team will travel to take on this same Danville squad for another double-header. Sunday wraps up what will be seven games in six days when they travel to Kokomo for games against Muncie and Kokomo.
“We get started in a hurry,” Proctor said of the schedule. “Indianapolis is a new team this summer that we know nothing about so we’ll learn a lot on Tuesday.”
Tuesday’s game is scheduled for a 6:30 pm first pitch. Wednesday and Thursday’s games are a 7 pm start and Wednesday’s game can also be heard on Thunder 103.9 WIMC.
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