Collinsville has faced Alton ace Bryan Hudson twice this season. They have scored zero earned runs against the lanky lefty in 14 innings, struck out 19 times and have beaten him twice.
A two-out, seventh inning rally Tuesday afternoon gave the Kahoks (13-10, 6-4 Southwestern Conference) a 2-1 victory over Alton (16-12, 3-7 SWC). It was the second time this season Collinsville rallied in the seventh to defeat Hudson.
Starting pitcher Kyle Reeves led off the bottom of the seventh with a duck snort that flared over the first baseman’s head and dropped as close to foul on the right field foul line as possible. The hit was Reeves’ second of the day.
Collinsville Head Coach Pete Trapp said fortune has not always been on his team’s side this year when it came to hits like Reeves’ in the seventh.
“It’s been some of our luck this year that those balls go foul, or those balls are lined to the glove of someone,” Trapp said.
Aaron Oritz followed Reeves and failed to execute a sacrifice bunt. When Spencer Thomas struck out, it appeared the game was heading for extra frames.
Aaron Peskar, who has four game-winning hits this year, all in games stared by Reeves, was intentionally walked to bring up Grant Bauer. The strategy seemed to work when Bauer hit a bounding ball on the infield, but the third basemen could not handle an awkward hop and suddenly the bases were full of Kahoks with two outs.
Zach Mathes, who relieved Reeves in the fifth with two outs and the bases loaded – and got out of the inning without allowing a run – strode to the plate after Bauer reached on an error. Hudson quickly went to 3-0 on Mathes, before getting one over the plate. The next pitch, however, missed inside and Reeves trotted home with the winning run.
Beating Hudson twice in a season is a nice accomplishment for the team, Trapp said.
“That kids good, he’s real good,” Trapp said. “It’s a great feat for the guys, and they should be proud of themselves.”
The Kahoks other run came in the fourth when a hustling Tanner Houck scored from second on a two-out error by the Alton shortstop that allowed Reeves to reach first base.
Hudson’s final line included seven innings pitched, two unearned runs allowed, seven strikeouts, three hits allowed and six walks issued.
Reeves and Mathes combined to allow only three hits and one unearned run on the day.
A first inning error and three passed balls gave the Redbirds a 1-0 lead before Collinsville came to bat. Dylan McEwen, the Kahoks regular starting catcher, left the game Saturday with an injury. His return date is uncertain.
Mathes pitched the final 2 1/3 innings to pick up the win, his third of the season.
Houck will be on the bump for the Kahoks Wednesday at 4:30 when they face Piasa Southwestern at Arthur Fletcher Field in Woodland Park.