By Tim Taylor
After little offense in the first four innings Wednesday afternoon, the CMS Trojans established a healthy lead in the top of the fifth and never looked back for a 10-4 victory over the Shelbyville Rams.
Alex Matheny struck out seven and walked five over four innings to earn the win.
CMS took the lead in the top of the third. Chase King walked, stole second after a pick-off attempt, advanced to third on an errant throw and scored on an infield single.
The Rams loaded the bases in the fourth on two walks and a swinging bunt, tying the score at 1-1 when Matheny walked the next batter.
With two outs in the fifth with Ty Helton on base, King hammered a shot to deep left field and cruised into third with a triple. Matheny followed with an infield single that scored King, and Jacob Reed singled to drive in Matheny, who had stolen second, making it 4-1.
In the sixth inning, Quinn Taylor hit a sharp liner the left fielder mishandled, took second and third on wild pitches and scored on a single to right by Helton. Helton later scored after stealing second, taking third after a botched pickoff attempt, and racing home on a wild pitch. After Brady Collins walked, King crushed a two-run homer over the left-field fence, making it 8-1.
Taylor entered as a pitcher in the sixth and had control problems—walking two and giving up two singles. Brady Collins relieved Taylor in the inning. The Rams scored three runs but it wasn’t enough after CMS scored twice in the top of the seventh.
Collins struck out the final three batters to secure the win.
Charleston next faces Mattoon this afternoon.