By JUSTIN RAINS
Despite the final score in Friday’s 18-8 win over Trinidad, Cayuga players and coaches weren’t completely pleased with how the team played.
Tuesday, the Wildcats got things turned around in a big way.
Cayuga had 16 hits — five more than in Friday’s game — and rolled to an easy, 12-2 victory over visiting Cross Roads.
“We played a lot better tonight offensively and that’s what I wanted to see,” CHS coach Greg Branch said. “Tonight, I was glad to see us take more aggressive cuts and really attack the baseball.”
Cayuga blew things open in the fourth, after the Bobcats had cut the Wildcat lead to 2-1 in the top of the frame.
Payton Wallace got the inning off to a hot start, sending a 2-0 pitch over the fence in right-centerfield to make it 3-1.
It was one of four hits for Wallace in the game, and the Cayuga infielder scored all four times he reached base.
Wallace has registered multi-hit bids in the last three games, and in the last two he’s reached base nine times, scoring eight runs.
“He was at the top of the lineup early in the season, but he got into a bit of a slump so I dropped him down to try and find his swing,” Branch said of his shortstop. “He’s started doing that and I put him right back at the top, and he’s been on base the last three or four games, and has really found a rythm there and gained some confidence.”
Following Wallace’s blast, Hunter Johnson drew and walk and then stole second before moving to third on a Chantz Holland single. Holland then stole second to put runners at second and third for Chandler Rigdon.
Like Wallace, Rigdon didn’t stay in the ballpark for long.
The sophomore bombed a 1-1 pitch deep over the right field wall, plating Rigdon’s third, fourth and fifth RBI of the night and pushing the Cayuga lead to 6-1.
The Wildcats added another run when John Vickery reached with a two-out single, then moved to third on a single from Cota Wilburn.
In the course of Cross Roads attempting to play the Wilburn single, Vickery was able to score on an error.
Wallace plated Cayuga’s eighth run in the fourth, scoring on a single from Johnson after reaching on a lead-off double.
Cayuga then put things away in the sixth when, not surprisingly, Wallace led off the inning with a double, scoring on a deep single from Chantz Holland.
Johnson, who reached via a walk after Wallace’s double, scored on a groundout from Rigdon, and Jaret Walthall looked as if he’d end the game with a home run in the next at-bat.
But, the strong wind blowing straight out wasn’t enough to push the ball over the fence, and the Cayuga catcher had to settled for a double.
Holland then scored on a deep ball to shortstop from Preston Anderson, and the game ended with a Vickery single that scored Walthall to make it 12-2.
In his longest outing of the season, Cayuga pitcher Hunter Jenkins struck out 10 and allowed five hits and two runs, one of which was earned.
Wallace, Johnson and Vickery all reached base four times in the game, with Wallace and Vickery finishing 3-for-3 with a walk each, and Johnson finishing 2-for-2 with two walks.
Rigdon was 2-for-3 with six RBI, while Holland was 3-for-4 with three singles and three runs scored.
Cayuga (16-3, 9-1) travels to LaPoynor Friday for a 5 p.m. first pitch, before hosting Mexia at noon Saturday.