Tigers making improvements as league play draws closer

By Austin Bishop
The Winston County Journal

The Tigers of Noxapater High School will take a 2-3 record into next week’s baseball action, thanks to a 12-3 win over Riverside in the East Webster Tournament.

Noxapater is set to host Ethel on Tuesday, before opening district play against arch rival Nanih Waiya on March 21 in Noxapater.

The Tigers dropped an 11-5 decision to East Webster on Saturday morning, before following that up with the win over Riverside. Noxapater then closed out the tourney with a 10-3 loss to Bruce on Monday.

“I was pretty pleased with our performance against East Webster, despite the loss,” said Noxapater head baseball coach Casey Orr. “They are a good 2A program and we were right in the middle of it with them. We just had one bad inning that blew it open.

“We didn’t get the full seven-inning performance we need, but it was promising to be able to compete with them,” he said. Orr said that against Riverside the Tigers got ahead early, but then struggled putting the game away.

“Our kids were in a new position,” he said. “They really hadn’t been out in front of anybody like that. We just didn’t do a good job of finishing and let them scratch away and almost get back in it.”

Trevara Miller blasted a double and a single and drove in two runs in the game with East Webster, while Tristin Boyette, Marshall Kugle and Brandon Kugle each had a single.

Noxapater scored eight runs in the second inning to take a 9-0 lead over Riverside, before eventually taking the 12-3 win.

Marshall Kugle was the winning pitcher for the Tigers, giving up just one earned run and striking out five in four innings of work. He also had a double and drove in two runs while scoring another.

Brandon Kugle had two hits against Enterprise, while Matt Smith, Braden Estes, Keonte Daniels and R.J. Pierce added one each. Miller, Marshall Kugle and Estes scored two runs each for the winners.

The Tigers were in the game early against Bruce, trailing just 3-2 going into the fifth inning. But the first two Trojans reached on errors and from there the game got away from them. Noxapater only had two hits in the game.