SHAWNEE – The Shawnee Wolves took advantage of an exhausted McAlester bullpen Saturday afternoon to finish the Shawnee Showdown untarnished with four straight wins. The Wolves run-ruled the Buffaloes for the second time this season, this time a 10-2 defeat with a walk-off courtesy of Creed Killgore in the fifth.
It was a good all-around game for the Wolves, coach Kevin Paxson said.
“Carson Payne pitched a heck of a game, the guys had a good plan at the plate and they executed,” he said.
McAlester changed pitchers three times in the fifth inning and for a moment it looked like Brooks Neeley was going to sidestep the run-ruling before Killgore sent a hit to left to bring in Austin Wood for the game-winner. Neeley inherited three balls and no strikes to Jay Easley with bases loaded and no outs on the board as he entered the game in place of Anthony Pinkney. Easley reached on a fielder's choice as Scout Cawvey was forced out at home to avoid the walk-off and Jacob Hill was sat down to bring up Killgore.
The Wolves scored three other runs in the inning with a bases loaded walk to Kade Self and HBP's on Cawvey and Wood.
Self was 2-2 on the night with a walk, HBP and four RBI that included a three-run bomb to left to give the Wolves a 6-1 lead in the fourth. Cale Reed singled and Cawvey reached on a fielder's choice to set up Self with the two out blast.
It was nothing new for the Shawnee senior.
“Every time he steps to the plate he can do damage,” Paxson said.
Easley was the first to get Shawnee on the board after grounding into a double play in the bottom of the first to score Cawvey and Hill followed with a single that dropped near the line in shallow right to bring home Wood.
Hill completed the game 3-4 with a double and drove in two runs to cap off a solid performance over the three day tournament.
“He's kinda seeing the ball good now,” Paxson said. “This tournament he kinda broke out and he's feeling well, feeling good.”
Trailing 2-1 in the top of the third, Neeley nearly had a lead-off double for the Buffaloes, but a bullet from Easley in right to Killgore at second kept McAlester from putting a runner in scoring position.
“That's a game changer," Paxson said. "We talk about how you never know when you're going to make a play that can change the momentum of the game and be ready for it in those type of plays,” Paxson said. “Be locked in, be ready for it and execute those plays.”
Easley also saved a run from coming across with a diving catch in the top of the fifth to keep Chris Hilton from scoring and close out the top frame.
Easley and Taylor were each 2-4 on the night and Cawvey was 1-2 but made it on base all four occasions and scored twice.
Payne tossed all five innings for the Wolves and struck out five and walked two for the win.
Robbie Waldron got the start for McAlester and gave up six runs on ten hits, struck out four and walked three in the four innings he pitched. Alton Jones was handed the loss and gave up four runs on two hits.
The 8-5 Wolves will be back home Monday at 5 p.m. against Owasso as they look to extend their win streak to five.