Thursday’s season opener for the Red Lion baseball team went as well as one could have hoped.
The Lions exploded for 10 runs, starting pitcher Wyatt Tyson had a good outing, reliever Briar Lauer helped keep Hershey at bay after Tyson left in the fifth, and Red Lion came away with a 10-4 win.
“The biggest positive was our mental approach,” Red Lion coach Kevin Lawrence said. “We made a few mistakes, but we recovered from all of them. We didn’t make any double mistakes, where we made a mistake and then fixed it by making a second mistake on top of it.
“When we made a mistake we were able to recover by correcting it, so we continued to improve throughout the game.”
Four-run innings in the second and fourth set the tone early on. After already having a 2-0 lead over Hershey in the second, Patrick Daugherty hit a shot to right-center field that went all the way to the wall and allowed him to round the bases on a two-run inside the park home run.
“I just looked for a pitch where I got it in my zone,” he said about the play. “I tried to drive it and I got the bat on the ball.”
The Lions added two runs in the sixth to extend their lead again.
The offensive outburst helped take some of the pressure off Tyson early in the game. The Lions starter found himself in jam in the first with runners on the corners, but he managed to work his way out of it by getting Hershey batter Owen DeFlitch to ground out to short.
“I think (I) performed pretty well,” Tyson said about his start. “Obviously I was a little nervous out there to start, but after the first inning the jitters got away. People were making plays for me and diving back there. Just a good feeling to know your teammates have your back.”
Red Lion’s pitching came up again in the fifth, holding Hershey to just two runs after the Trojans loaded the bases with no one out.
Hershey added two more runs in the top of the seventh.