By Chuck Reherman
MUSTANG – The one thing Yukon needed to do to get back into the thick of the district title race was to pull off a sweep of Mustang in the Bedlam on the Diamond battle.
Break out the broom.
Braylen Wimmer’s two-run home run in the top of the 10th inning broke a 2-2 tie and sent the Millers to a 4-2 District 6A-1 win and a sweep of the series, Tuesday in Mustang.
The sweep helped moved the Millers into a tie for second place with Edmond North with 4-2 records, two games behind Norman North for first and a game ahead of the Broncos and Edmond Memorial for fourth.
The Millers used late game heroics in both wins over Mustang to improve their record to 8-7 overall.
It was another game of pitching duals between the Millers and Mustang. The Millers matched Mustang again on the mound as starter Carson Benge allowed only two hits in four and two-thirds innings (allowing both runs) and Carson Schultz came on to finish the game, working five and one-third innings and allowing only two hits.
“It was a another good win for us, a big win,” Miller head coach Kevin James said. “I thought both teams pitched it really, really well. We made some defensive plays, stayed in it and we got a chance late and had a big clutch hit.
“Both of our pitchers challenged and didn’t use a lot of pitches,” he said. “With the change from pace stuff coming from Benge to Schultz and Shultz was just dazzling them with his brilliance. He just flips it up there and see it they can hit it or set back. It’s tough to do.
“That’s a big win, two huge wins for us. The way the game was going, it was going to come down to a big hit or an error. They have a couple of boppers in the middle of their line-up and we do too. You hate to see those guys come up, because they can turn a ball game around pretty quick. But, I was proud of our guys, we battled.
“We are a little laid back sometimes, but were still in it and battling. If we are throwing strikes we are not bad on the mound. Good win for us.”
Schultz had pitched his way out of a pair of jams in the seventh and ninth innings. Mustang put a pair of runners on base in the seventh with two out on a single and a hit batter. But, Schultz got the next batter to strike out and end the inning.
In the ninth inning, the Broncos again put two runners on base with two outs on an error and a walk. Again, Schultz got out of the inning getting the next batter to pop up for the third out.
“Our guys pitched ahead all day long and gave us a chance,” James said. “They threw pitches for strikes and kept them from getting into scoring position.
“Mustang didn’t have a whole lot of guys on second base,” he said. “We catch a break when Carson (Benge) gets a comebacker and gets the runner at third base.
“We did have a couple of base running errors, they pick us off second and then pick us off first. We had runners at first and third and they picked us off first on a 31 move.”
The game turned the Millers way in the 10th when Wimmer stepped into a fastball and drove it over the left field wall to break the tie.
Jett Lodes had singled with one out before Wimmer stepped into the batters box. He sent a 1-0 fastball high over the left field wall and gave the Millers a 4-2 lead.
Mustang did try to rally when Logan Glass singled with one out. Schultz then got Dax Fulton to line out and Brody Rexroad to hit into a fielder’s choice., forcing Glass out at second base to end the game.
Yukon had taken the initial lead, scoring a run in the top of the first inning on a sacrifice fly from Wimmer. Nollan Koon had walked and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Lodes before Wimmer flied out to center field, driving in the run.
Drew Janvrin’s RBI single in the second inning drove in a second run. Benge had singled and courtesy runner Jacob Russell advanced to second before Janvrin’s base hit.
Mustang tied the game in the bottom of the second on an RBI single from Zach Johnson and a sacrifice fly from Cole Conner.
The Millers will play a key district series with Edmond Memorial Monday and Tuesday. YHS hosts the Bulldogs at 4:30 p.m. Monday and travels to Memorial on Tuesday.
“There are four us that went into today 3-2 and that knocks Mustang down a notch and us 4-2,” James said. “Our deal is, we control our own destiny. The guys in front of us Norman North are 6-0 and Edmond North is 4-2, so it gets us to where we need to be.
“We just need to keep taking care of our business,” he said. “We need to keep getting strong pitching performances every time we go out there and keep working at the plate. We have to get some things worked out at the plate. But, we are glad to get out of here with a win and I’m just as happy as I can be right now.”
By Chuck Reherman