All fun and games in Chatsworth

Matt Hamilton/Daily Citizen-News

Murray County High School's Preston VanMeter slides into home before Christian Heritage School catcher Zach Gentry can receive the throw.

CHATSWORTH — In the Murray County Indian dugout, the Indians were cheering, they were laughing, they were having a good time.

They were having fun.

Fun was the key for the Indians in their 16-7 win over the Christian Heritage Lions, according to center fielder Preston VanMeter.

"Everybody was ready to have fun," VanMeter said. "We haven't had a home game in a while so I think everybody was locked in and ready to get a W."

It's been over two weeks, in fact, since the last Murray County home game. On Wednesday the Indians delighted the home crowd, getting to see their hometown team for only the second time in 2018, with an 18-hit outburst.

"We just had to hit around," Indian senior Josh Cain said. "Hit the ball, make contact, move runners over, get runners in."

A simple concept, and one the Indians executed over and over.

"Hitting, everybody came along, everybody was hitting," VanMeter said. "Bottom of the lineup, top, middle, everywhere."

It started at the top of the lineup as the first four hitters — Kyle Dotson, Logan Palmer, VanMeter and Cain — each had three-hit games. VanMeter had a pair of doubles and a triple, driving in five runs. Cain finished the night with four RBIs while Dotson and Palmer each had two.

"I think we fed off each other good," Palmer said. "Top of the lineup hit good and it just led us through, we followed through."

Hitting can become contagious, evidenced by the way it spread throughout the Indians' lineup

"Especially the top of the lineup, whenever the top of the lineup starts, everybody else seems like they want to follow through," VanMeter said. "We come through in the middle of the lineup, they start getting hits, the bottom of the lineup comes and follows and we keep going."

Gauge Stanley also had three hits from the six-spot in the lineup and nine-hitter Grayson Pierce had two with a RBI. Justin Goswick also had a RBI single for the Indians.

However, before Murray County (3-7) ever took the plate it was Christian Heritage (1-6) threatening to break the game open. In the top of the first the Lions had one run already on the board before loading the bases with one out. Cain, starting on the mound for Murray County, quelled the rally by inducing a short ground ball that became a force out at home, and then a pop fly to catcher Pierce.

"That's a big thing. You got to execute when you have runners in scoring position," Christian Heritage coach Jamey Middleton said. "That's kind of been our thing this year, we've left guys on base a lot."

After leaving the bases loaded in the first, the Lions stranded two in the third and left the bases loaded again in the fourth.

Murray County broke the game open with a six-run second inning, following it up with five in the third.

Christian Heritage got a two-run single from Christian Humphrey and RBI hits from Drew Clements and Mitchell Herndon. Four errors, however, proved detrimental to Christan Heritage's cause.

"We gave up a lot of freebies, made a lot of defensive errors," Middleton said. "We just can't give them runs. We battled. We did battle and we did come back. I was proud of them for coming back and fighting but we're just giving up easy runs, making too many errors in the field."

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