Fifth inning homer lifts Lafayette baseball to win over Oxford
OXFORD – In the first crosstown classic game of 2019, it was a Commodore freshman netting the go-ahead runs in the Lafayette 5-3 win over rival Oxford.
“Every game is important for us. Obviously, these kids know each other. They go to church together and live in the community together. Of course you want to win that,” said Lafayette coach John Walker. “But we’re also playing tonight with these division games in mind.”
Getting the scoring going was, ironically, the Commodore pitcher. Senior Zach Meagrow scored the game’s first run, taking Oxford starter Eli Wicker deep to left center for a solo shot home run. Lafayette’s 1-0 lead stood through three, otherwise scoreless innings.
A game that seemed to be a pitching duel early – only one run was scored through three innings – quickly blew up. Of the game’s eight total runs score, five combined came in the fourth inning. Lafayette took a 3-0 lead when senior Will Larson scored two runners on a well-hit ball to right center.
The Chargers didn’t need long to even the score. Oxford’s Alex Childers drove in a run on a single in the bottom of the fourth before Ty Wicker drove in two more on a double deep to the right-field wall, tying the game at three.
Tyrus Williams, the Commodore’s freshman shortstop put Lafayette back on top in the fifth with a two-run homer to right center. Williams also drew two walks in the game.
“He’s a really advanced player man. For a freshman, he hits that home run win two strikes,” Walker said. “He hit it to the gap and the wind took care of it the rest of the way. Huge hit.”
Despite netting ten hits on the Commodore pitching staff, it wasn’t the best night for the Chargers offensively. All of their hits and runs came with two outs, making it tough to bring themselves back from behind.
“We weren’t very efficient,” Oxford head coach Chris Baughman said. “We were never able to put anything together and sustain anything. We never got the lead-off guy on.”
Both teams threw four pitchers in the game, setting themselves up for division games on Friday and Monday that will determine playoff seeding and divisional standings.
“The guys that threw for us did a good job. They had two balls they hit out that got up in the wind – those are probably fly ball outs any other time,” Baughman said. “But they hit balls and we didn’t. That’s been our thing all year. It’s been a roller coaster. You’re either going to get a really good Oxford team or a very average Oxford team, and I never know which one is going to show up.”
Oxford and Lafayette will re-ignite the crosstown classic on Saturday at Lafayette, weather dependent. Both teams play division games on Friday and next Monday.